1959 Plane Crash at Intermountain Speedway


In December 1959 an F86-L SabreJet of the Wyoming Air National Gard Collided with a light aircraft south of Cheyenne. The pilot of the light aircraft Gene A. Lewis, 37, president of Scenic Outdoor Advertising , St Cloud, MN was killed. Lewis (deceased) was found a quarter of a mile south of the red and yellow wings and front half of the fuselage. The planes tail assembly had been sheered off right behind the cockpit. The engine was about 300 yards west of the body. Photographs showed that the Beechcraft had broken power lines on it’s way down. Pilot Bill Meckum flying the F-86L ejected safely. The F-86L crashed into the center field of the Intermountain Speedway stock car track making a deep crater and emitting smoke. The light aircraft was scattered across the prairie about a mile away. The F-86 created a crater and was completely destroyed. An extensive search that lasted several days was conducted in the crater and the surrounding area for the twenty four 2.75 inch high explosive rockets that were onboard the aircraft. All but 4 of the explosive rockets were found.

One witness said there was a big explosion when the two planes came together about 3:20 P.M. National Guard officials estimated the planes were flying at approximately 3,000 feet. The jet disintegrated, scattering pieces of fuselage like confetti over a quarter of a mile area onto Highway 85-87.

Article Credits: : Bernard Horton, Wyoming Eagle/ Daniel L. Molineaux, Staff Sgt., Historian, Public Affairs Office, Wyoming National Guard/ Casper Tribune-Herald/ Wyoming State Tribune

Link to a pdf of the accident report:

Civil Aeronautics Board Aircraft Accident Report - Published August 22.1960

Debris Field

Wyoming State Tribune December 17, 1959

Wyoming State Tribune- December 16, 1959

Casper Tribune-Herald, December 16, 1959

Article Credits: : Bernard Horton, Wyoming Eagle/ Daniel L. Molineaux, Staff Sgt., Historian, Public Affairs Office, Wyoming National Guard/ Casper Tribune-Herald/ Wyoming State Tribune

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