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Arthur Kudner, Inc., advertising agency

Lockheed Electra 10A 1062 was delivered to Arthur Kudner, of New York, head of Arthur Kudner, Inc., an advertising agency, on June 16, 1936, bearing registration NC16051. The aircraft was used over the next three years on business trips across the country. Unfortunately on August 15, 1939, the aircraft crashed and burned just after taking off from Rentschler Field, Hartford, Connecticut. The day of the accident the Electra had just arrived at 12:30 p.m. at Rentschler Field to have its metering pump checked out as well as its Pratt & Whitney Wasp engines. Following the needed work the plane was ready to go around 4 p.m., the plan was to head back to Roosevelt Field in New York, the Electra's home field. Wind blowing only six miles-per-hour out of the southeast, NC16051 took off at 4:15 p.m. with five people on board. Witnesses stated later that the airplane looked as though it was failing to gain altitude; at the south end of the field sat a eight foot mesh fence and beyond that a tobacco field, the contents of which had been harvested earlier that day. The Electra passed over the fence, clearing it by 15 feet, and appeared to be losing altitude, suddenly the left wing dipped and struck the ground, bouncing back into the air. The left wing struck the ground again creating a roughly 30 foot trough. As the wing dug into the earth it spun the ship around tearing the motors off and left the aircraft facing west where it settled and began to burn. Accounts vary as to what happened next; some witnesses stated that all occupants were thrown from the ship and others say several men had to pull passengers out of the ship. Out of the five men on board, two were dead and the other three inured. Those dead were passengers Michael Madrazo, a 35 year old mechanic from New York, and 31 year old New York attorney Joseph Kransky. Pilot Wynn Bradford, 36, survived the crash with a neck injury and injury to his right ankle. Co-pilot Eli Abramson, 38, sustained injuries to his head, back and legs, in addition to first and second degree burns. Passenger George Daulfkirsch, 39, received head lacerations as a result of the crash, and possibly a fractured left arm. Following an investigation into the crash, engine failure was decided upon as the likely culprit for the cause of the accident.


Pilot Wynn Bradford, left, and Co-pilot Eli Abramson The Brooklyn Eagle, Wednesday August 16, 1939

A view of the wreckage The Hartford Courant, Wednesday August 16, 1939

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