June 24, 2012
This May 23, 1962 file photo shows officials searching the wreckage of Continental Airlines Flight 11 which crashed near Unionville, Mo. Aviation buffs know Flight 11 as the country’s first bombing of a commercial jet airliner, an act of sabotage by a passenger that killed all 45 people on board. Yet the crash of the plane, which departed Chicago en route to Los Angeles with a Kansas City stop, was largely forgotten as time passed, families moved on and more horrific airline incidents came to dominate history.
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Maureen Riordan's family barely spoke about the plane crash that killed her father when she was just 11. Same for Ronnie Cook, a Missouri soybean farmer who as a high school junior was among the first on the scene when Continental Airlines Flight 11 went down 50 years ago just south of the Iowa border.
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