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Suffet Origin: Plane Wreck At Los Gatos (background) (44) RE: Help: Plane Wreck At Los Gatos 21 Dec 12


Here is some additional information regarding the January 28, 1948, plane crash west of Coalinga, California, that inspired Woody Guthrie's song Deportees. I compiled this information from several sources, which I then cross checked to weed out errors such as misspellings, duplications, and omissions. In a few instances, I found alternative spellings for what was clearly the name of the same person, so I arbitrarily chose the spelling that was more frequent for that person.

All 32 people aboard were killed, including the pilot Frank C. Atkinson, the cabin attendant and pilot's wife Bobbie Atkinson, the copilot Marion H. Ewing, and US Imigration Service security guard Frank H. Chaffin.

Here, too, are the names of the 28 agricultural workers being deported to Mexico. All 28 were buried in a common grave in Holy Cross Cemetery in Fresno, California.

Those 12 whose remains were positively identified were Ramon Perez, Jesus Santos, Ramon Portello, James A. Guardaho, Guadalupe Ramirez, Julio Barron, Jose Macias, Martin Navarro, Apolonio Placentia, Santiago Elisandro, Salvadore Sandoval, and Manuel Calderon.

The 16 passengers whose remains were too badly burned and thus could not be identified were Francisco Duran, Rosalio Estrado, Bernabe Garcia, Severo Lara, Elias Macias, Tomas Marquez, Juan Martinez, Louis Medina, Manuel Merino, Luis Mirando, Ygnacio Navarro, Roman Ochoa, Alberto Raygoza, Guadalupe Rodriguez, Maria Rodriguez, and Juan Ruiz.

Rest in peace.

--- Steve Suffet

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