February 12, 2012

Here’s to those folks who found the 705 blog during the past year. Thank you for taking the time to write and share.

Here’s to our loved ones.

Here’s to gentle and marked remembrance.

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4 Responses to February 12, 2012

  1. Sharon D. Mangas says:

    I’ve been doing some family history for my first grandchild, and came across this site. I was googling “P.R. Mallory Co.,” which is the company my late father (Herman Drach, b.1900-d.1955) worked for. During his years at Mallory in Indianapolis, he worked for Joe Cain, the President of the company. Mr. Cain was a passenger on flight 705. The strange thing is, my father, Herman A. Drach, also died in a tragic accident. The Mallory organization sent him to Huntsville, AL in 1955 to oversee the opening of a new battery plant. While on a business day trip with a Chamber of Commerce executive, he was killed in a one car accident. When I read your story of how your life was changed by the loss of your father, it mirrored my thoughts about life after my own father’s tragic passing. I’m now 61 years old, and was just 4 years old when my father died. I still have a hollow place in my heart. We just never know how our lives will unfold, or what will happen tomorrow. I recall my mother telling me how kind Mr. Cain was to our family after my dad died…and then a few years later, Mr. Cain was gone too, the victim of another tragedy. My heart goes out to you and all the folks who lost loved ones in this accident. Sharon Drach Mangas, Indiana

    • T.L. Heil says:

      Dear Sharon,

      Thank you so much for sharing the story of your dad, Herman. Your taking the time to write reiterates something I feel is so important, that stories of loss, and how they change lives, are as important to share with our families as those of joy and celebration. It is indeed remarkable how your story, and those of the families affected by Flight 705’s accident, interconnect. I remember that just a few years after the loss of Flight 705, another airline accident, this time in Japan, resulted in the loss of many of my father’s coworkers, and their wives, from the Thermo-King Corporation of Minneapolis, Minn. It was an ironic twist as some of them had given comfort to my mother after the loss of my dad just a few years before.

      I recently became a grandmother for the first time myself, and in doing so I realized how important it is to pass on these stories to the next generation. May your dad’s memory live on in your family and its new generations. My deepest sympathy to you and and yours for his loss. All the best to you. Theresa

  2. Sharon Mangas says:

    Thank you Theresa. One of the life changing moments that came out of the tragedy of my father’s death came to me years later. My husband and I took our boys to Space Camp in Alabama in the late 1980’s, and while there, I looked up the wife of the man who was in the accident with my father. The other man survived the wreck with minor injuries. Our families stayed in contact for awhile, but by the time my family visited Huntsville, there had been little contact for years, other than the occasional exchanging of Christmas cards. I made a visit to the man’s wife (now widowed), but she was obviously suffering from dementia, so I didn’t stay long. She gave me the name and phone number of her daughter, who was perhaps 10 years older than me. I called the daughter, explaining who I was, having no doubt she would remember me. To my surprise, she struggled to remember the accident, and tried hard to place me. After further chat–with me supplying prompts– she was finally able to recall the accident and our family. I realized then how all of us filter our life events in different ways. The accident that killed my father changed the entire outcome of my life, while to the other family, the accident was just a minor blip on the screen, buried and forgotten in the sands of time. It was the weirdest feeling. A feeling of terrible melancholy. But it gave me pause to reflect on the fact that we never really know what another person may be feeling. The burdens they carry. The suffering they feel. Losing a parent as a young child has helped me to be a more empathetic and compassionate human being. I don’t take life for granted, or at least I try not to. Did your mother ever remarry? Mine didn’t, though she was only 35 and still a very beautiful young woman when my dad died. He was 20 years older than mother. (I tried to “paste” a picture to this post, but was unable to).

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