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Tomorrow in History, 1945: Bomber Crashes into Empire State Building

On July 28, 1945, as World War II was coming to an end, an American B-25 bomber got lost in the fog above New York City. At 9:49 AM it crashed into the Empire State Building, damaging the 78th and 79th floors. Although it was a Saturday morning, there were people working in the building. Fourteen people were killed and twenty-six sustained injuries.

Now, normally I would have posted this tomorrow, but I just realized that this is the 60th anniversary of the event. As I happen to be in New York City at the moment, I would like to attend any commemoration that might be happening.

Problem is, I don't know if there is one. I've searched the web and the Empire State Building site, and nothing has presented itself. I'd also have no idea who to call at the ESB. If anyone out there reading this today can help me out, I'd appreciate it.

If it turns out that there isn't one, perhaps people would like to meet me tomorrow morning at the ESB Observation Deck at 9:30 AM for our own commemoration?



The bomber crashed dead center into the north face of the building. When you take the first elevator up en route to the observation deck, you get let out at the 80th floor. The line to go to the next elevator threads around a room on the 80th floor on the north side. While you're standing there, you're standing in what likely was the upper edge of the accident scene.

When i was about 9 years old, I got a book of New York Times disaster front pages from 1871 (Chicago Fire) to 1975 (JFK crash). The one on the 1945 ESB accident had always intrigued me the most as a youngster.

On a side note, I also vaguely remember the helicopter crash on the roof of the PanAm (now Met Life bldg). I believe it was around May, 1977 and killed a few people on the roof and a woman in the street. It ended rooftop helicopter landings for good in NYC.

December 2016

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