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1951 plane crash site abandoned

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Partial view of two of the graves in the bush along with Mr. Michael Warner
After being lingered in the bush for years, the historical grave site of the 1951plane crash in Sannoyea District, Lower Bong County, has claimed the attention of many Liberians with an eminent citizen of Margibi County emphasizing the need for attention to be given to the site.

There is a historical grave site in Sannoyea of missionaries who lost their lives in a plane crash in June 1951, while enroute to Liberia. Mr. Michael Warner, Road Maintenance Superintendent for the Salala Rubber Cooperation made the called recently when he spoke to reporters in Weala, Margibi County following a visit to the grave site.

He encouraged the people of Sannoyea to brush the site, noting that it is very much prudent for Liberians to see the need to give necessary attention in ensuring the area is always lively and welcoming.

According to him, if the area is kept decent, people from around the country and the world could develop interest in going there, adding that he has an understanding that people used to visit the site from different places.

He said the arear being a historical site could be used to attract tourists to Bong County and Liberia in general, adding that it needs to be maintained. He recalled the victims were missionaries and it is possible that any of their descendants could travel to Liberia to know how well their fallen relatives’ grave site is being taken care of.

Michael, who has also gone to attend a petition program of a friend in the arear, said he was reliably informed by some old folks claiming to hail from Sannoyea the victims were missionaries travelling to Liberia.

The SRC employees continued that the accident occurred in June 1951 on top of a hill with tall trees almost the same size known as Sannon, after which the district is named. According to him, the crash occurred as a result of limited fuel, narrating that the pilot of the plane then asked a missionary on an airstrip to allow them do an emergency landing due to fuel shortage.

The missionary on the airstrip according to him quickly informed the pilot that the airstrip was too small to land due to the size of the plane. While in search of an ideal place to land, the pilot mistook the Sannon Trees on top of the hill that grew in nearly equal size to be a level field and landed something which caused the plane to crash, killing all passengers onboard, including children and adults.

Michael also told reporters the victims were buried on a piece of land of approximately 10 meters square. The names and ages of the victims are inscribed on one of the graves. In a related development, Mr. Warner has expressed frustration that local authorities of Sannoyea have their offices adjacent the grave site, but care less about keeping the place clean.

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