Juda Residents Remember Plane CrashAP , Associated Press
Mar. 30, 1987 3:38 PM ET
JUDA, WIS. JUDA, Wis. (AP) _ Donna Lehr Newman says she still feels some guilt when she sees relatives of nine classmates who died on a class trip 20 years ago Monday.
''You look at them and think, 'Why (were they killed) and not me?'' she said.
Many of the 400 residents of Juda still speak with emotion about the accident that killed the ''Nine Angels'' just months before graduation. No public commemoration was planned Monday.
Mrs. Newman was one of 23 Juda High School students who survived a plane crash into their New Orleans hotel. The sound of a low-flying plane still disturbs her, she said.
A Delta Airlines DC-8 on a training flight crashed and exploded early on March 30, 1967. Nineteen people died.
One student was fatally injured when she was thrown out of the building. The other eight girls were found grouped under running water in a shower, apparently trying to escape the fire that followed the explosion.
Nelva Smith was among them.
Her father, Harry Smith, said certain events bring back the pain - seeing children march in parades, as his daughter frequently did, and seeing survivors, now married and with children of their own.
Tom Ferris, a junior high school teacher, was on the trip with his wife, Rita, also a teacher.
''Some families have dealt with it well over the years and others haven't,'' he said. ''A day doesn't go by that I don't think about it.''
The victims were remembered in a memory book and plaques. Mrs. Smith said four $500 memorial scholarships were awarded yearly until 1986 with money donated from across the country.