Fatal Plane Crash Took Life Of Famous Actress
Fatal plane crash takes life of beloved Hollywood star.
It was 75 years ago, January 16, 1942, that a tragic and fatal commercial airline crash occurred around Las Vegas’ McCarran Airport. This tragedy took the life of a Hollywood icon. At the time, she and her husband were two of the most well known Hollywood actors in the world.
The crash site still draws visitors to this day. The actress who died in the fatal crash that day was Carol Lombard, the wife of another famous Hollywood actor, Clark Gable.
Soon after take off from McCarran Airport, the TWA aircraft carrying Carol Lombard crashed. This was apparently due to pilot error. It was a crash that still brings the two iconic actors to the minds of many.
There is a ghost town about 30 minutes south of Las Vegas called Goodsprings that shares a part of this story. Within the Goodsprings area is a bar called the Pioneer Saloon. It is said to be haunted, but it also has a connection to both Clark Gable and Carol Lombard.
When word got to Clark Gable about the plane crash he rushed to the Las Vegas area and held a vigil at the Pioneer Saloon. Visitors to the saloon today will see Clark Gable and Carol Lombard memorabilia. There are also some cigar burns on the bar that legend says Clark Gable put there during a drunken stupor as he awaited word about his wife.
Not everyone supports the legend of the Pioneer Saloon. The Las Vegas Review Journal reported on the anniversary of the Lombard crash. In the article it is said:
In addition to doubting the Pioneer Saloon legend, Matzen casts cold water on the storybook romance angle of the Lombard-Gable marriage.
“They had an idyllic realtionship for several months,” he said, before adding, “Their marriage was already in trouble when she died. He had started a relationship with Lana Turner, which was the primary reason why (Lombard) rushed back to Hollywood and died on that mountain.”
Whatever the state of their marriage, Gable took his wife’s death hard.
There is a lot more detail to this story that you can read here.