Memorial service remembers victims in B-17 bomber crash on Mount Tom 75 years ago

Hampden County

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – It’s been 75 years since a B-17 bomber crashed into Mount Tom in Holyoke, killing 25 service members on board.

A ceremony open to the public at Mount Tom will be held Saturday at 10:00 a.m. to remember those victims. Family members of the crash victims and people of the community will gather to commemorate those lives lost 75 years ago.

The incident occurred on July 9, 1946 when the B-17 bomber crashed into the side of Mount Tom, its destinations was to Westover in Chicopee. The crash took the lives of 25 young men representing the U.S. Army, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Public Health Service and the American Red Cross. The servicemen ranging from 18 to 43 years old were returning home after serving in World War 2.

Family members of the victims will be present at this year’s ceremony among state officials. The ceremony will also recognize the 25th anniversary of the B-17 monument unveiling. The monument is at the site of where the crash occurred on the southeast side of Mount-Tom.

A total of 26 birch trees line the path to the memorial and serves as an overlook resting place for hikers and is meant to be sacred ground for the family members of the victims.

The 104th Fighter Wing is scheduled to conduct a flyover during the ceremony at approximately 10:20 a.m.

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