The eeriest photo is the one that shows the left wing of the aircraft in the foreground and white sheets draping the remains, but NOBODY else around. I had interviewed one of the ambulance attendants who had been hovering in the area when word came to them over two-way radio that the wreckage had been located and they hurried there and are the ones who probably quickly draped those sheets. What's interesting is, the newspaper photographer had to have been one of the first to arrive even before the huge throng of people assembled and started milling around. It is a spooky shot.
You can see THE tree on the right that the plane nose-dived into, and another tree on the left of the photo. Basically the bulk of the wreckage was between those two trees.
Notice on the left of the wing is a piece of wreckage which corresponds with what you see in another shot that shows one of the wheels. A second photo of this general vicinity is the one where you also see people with their backs to the camera. They were standing in the area of where Reeves' remains were found as he had been thrown clear of the crash whereas Dean was still in the wreckage up against the main tree.
The wheel shot shows the main landing gear leg assembly with what's called a Cleveland wheel hub with part of the disc brake assembly broken off. (You can see the broken piece in the wing picture). One crash investigator told me "I have never seen a Cleveland wheel in my lifetime in any crash like that with a break like that. Must have been a huge wrenching force." The brake caliper is also missing.
Depending upon how much you know about flying, you may further notice the aileron has a trim tab. This is surprising on a new airplane. What this tells you is that the Beechcraft Debonair that Jim and Dean died in flew one wing down in flight and needed a trim tab to make it fly "hands off" level. That's very surprising for a new airplane. Trim tabs like that are usually fitted as a last resort on re-builds or a wing replacement of a rebuilt aircraft. It further indicates the inherent instability of the plane that Jim flew as it was very touchy and hard to control even under good weather conditions. Given his limitations as a pilot, it became uncontrollable in turbulent conditions.
One of the other crash scene photos shows a man in a business suit wearing a white hat and a pipe clenched in his mouth. He has a clipboard in hand and he is the medical examiner, W.J. Core. Next to him with his hand on his hip is John Hornaday, the FAA inspector who did such a poor job of securing the site and thus compromised the investigation.
But if you've read my 672-page book, "Jim Reeves: His Untold Story," you know that there is strong evidence to suggest that authorities actually knew where the crash site was yet Friday night, and deliberately DIVERTED the search efforts away from the scene. So they had already probed the wreckage in an attempt to locate what they were looking for. In my book I hint at the reasons for this, and in the book "Hit List" by Richard Belzer and David Wayne (which has a chapter devoted to the Reeves crash that's based on my research), I go into more detail about this.
It's interesting that Peter Cooper of the Nashville Tennessean, in his story, obliquely alluded to the "fascinating" details I had come up with regarding the Reeves crash.
Incidentally, in the same photo as the medical examiner, you can see the engine of the plane at the bottom.
Still another new photo shows the pick-up truck that contained parts of the wreckage they were removing. Up to now the most famous shot of the truck shows it from behind. This is the first to show it from the side. The two men standing there talking with the people inside the truck are carrying ropes that they used to hoist the wreckage onto the bed of the truck.
There are other pics the Tennessean ran online with the new article which depict the crowd peering into the woods, plus at least another pic from a slightly different angle south of the tree, looking north.
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