Incident Name: the Crafton Hills brush fire on the San Bernardino National Forest near Yucaipa, CA
Date: July 5, 1959
Personnel: Donald McFarland Doughty
Agency/Organization: Hemet Valley Flying Service under contract with the US Forest Service; Don had been the FS R5 aviation officer for years.
Position: aerial firefighter
Summary: On 7/5/59, pilot Don Doughty in a Grumman TBM-3E tanker -- Tanker 69 -- departed Hemet-Ryan Airport, CA to drop borate retardent on a fire in the Yucaipa area. The wind was west to east and the plane crashed into a smoke-obscured ridge while making a downhill drop. Donald Doughty did not survive.
Photo of TBM. Credit: From Tom Janney's collection.
Photo Note from Tom: N9394H. This TBM was the first TBM ever tanked, owned by Hollywood flying legend Paul Mantz. Used as a test bed during the mid 50's Firescope program, this aircraft is like the one Don flew.
Here's a photo or T-69 from Project Remembrance. Very nice YouTube of their research.
Yucaipa area east of Redlands, CA -- general vicinity
- Not in the NTSB database. NTSB Search Utility No records prior to 1962.
- Project Remembrance. YouTube video of their research on T-69.
- California Death Index: Donald McFarland Doughty
- US Social Security Death Index: Donald Doughty
- The following come from a group of 1952 documents and photos from "CAB Accidents in Aerial Applications" from Robert Will, historian, Yucaipa Historical Society:
- Don left behind a wife and three children.
- Airtanker Pilots' Memorial Wall: Donald Doughty
- Message from Robert Will, Yucaipa Historical Society to John Miller. History of the TBM, aviation firefighting and the crash.
- Project Remembrance Team, captured from the YouTube video:
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