Every year on this date, I think of my dad, John C. Heil Jr.
I think of him at other times throughout the year, but particularly, on this day. I light a candle in his memory. I visit his gravesite. Maybe not on this exact day, but as close to it as I can, given the distance to his resting place from where I live.
My dad, known as “Jack” to his family and friends, passed away at age thirty-nine on this date in the company of forty-two others. They all shared something in common on that “Lincoln’s Birthday” of 1963: the same plane, Northwest Orient Airlines Flight 705. That flight, en route from Miami, Florida, to Chicago, Illinois, crashed thirteen minutes after takeoff killing everyone on board: thirty-eight passengers and five crew members.
I hope this space brings a chance to share, insight, healing, information. In memory of my dad, Jack Heil, and others who flew with him that day, “Welcome to all.”
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