Crash victims remembered

Published 10:58 am Friday, November 14, 2008

“They shall live on in the hearts of their

families and friends forever, and this

memorial records their loss to the

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university and to the community.”

— Inscription on Marshall memorial fountain

Stories about people overcoming adversity and working their way through difficult challenges have always been able to capture our imagination.

Thirty-eight years ago today, a horrific plane crash at Tri-State Airport took the lives of 75 people affiliated in one form or another with the Marshall University football team.

The story of that hardship, and the courage that followed, was so compelling that it warranted a major motion picture.

But beyond the romanticism and the hype that surrounded the “We Are Marshall” film, which was a fair representation, those of us here who were impacted by the tragedy are the ones who truly tell the story.

It seems most anyone in the Tri-State area today, even after all this time, still has some connection to that team, those people and their terrible fate.

And on this day, we tell the story in the most respectful way possible to make sure those who were lost are remembered.

On that plane were athletes, coaches, media members, community leaders and crew who all had a connection to the university. Marshall University is a place of higher learning that has improved the quality of life for countless individuals in this area and beyond, and the people who perished 38 years ago today made their contribution to that noble effort in their own very different ways.

The tragedy is not just one for Marshall University, but rather the entire Tri-State. And the people here will make sure they will never be forgotten.