My father died four decades ago in a plane crash under similar circumstances
Dad worked for an aerospace contractor as an electronics engineer in Southern California. Part of his work involved flying with other team members in a B25-Mitchell for test purposes. He was reticent to speak of exactly what his work entailed, but he'd been a radar man in the Navy and had mentioned radar a time or two.
On a sunny Saturday, May 10, 1969, the plane lost power shortly after taking off from LAX with four crew members aboard. The only possible landing point, assuming the pilot might have been able to maneuver the craft at all, was a large recreation field that was crowded with Little Leaguers, so no dice there in any case. The plane plowed into a small apartment building, killing all four aboard and a man and his grand-daughter in the apartment.
I can still remember watching in shock the helicopter footage of the flaming wreckage. I was almost 12 at the time. It was the blackest day of my life, and I'm sure for many other people as well.
The crew were given posthumous awards for heroism by the City of El Segundo for having avoided the playing fields and saving the lives of potentially many children. That may or may not have gone over very well with the family of the victims in the apartment.
We do not know the precise sequence of events before, during and after the engine failure and subsequent disaster that day, or what was said and done by the pilot. Suffice it to say a tragedy occurred, and there were no winners.