East Providence, R.I. – July 22, 1978

East Providence, Rhode Island – July 22, 1978

     On July 22, 1978, a lone pilot left Falmouth Municipal Airport on Cape Cod bound for Hartford Connecticut.  He was piloting a single-engine Beechcraft Musketeer, (#N5785V), a plane he was delivering to a dealership for his employer.  At about 11:20 a.m., while passing over eastern Rhode Island, he declared an emergency as the aircraft’s engine began to run erratically.  He’d hoped to make it to Green International Airport in Warwick, Rhode Island, but the engine lost all power as he was passing over East Providence.  The aircraft was now at 3,000 feet, and the pilot was forced to glide in for an emergency landing.  He spotted a grassy open area off Pawtucket Avenue and aimed for it.    

     After clearing some large fuel tanks at one end of the field, the plane came down and skidded along the ground before it struck a pole for some high-tension power lines.  The impact cracked the pole sending the top half crashing to the ground.  The aircraft came to rest with its nose completely demolished, but there was no fire, and the pilot was able to extricate himself.  He was transported to a hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.

     The cause of the accident was suspected to be a fuel leak.


     Providence Sunday Journal, “Out Of Gas, Pilot Wings It”, July 22, 1978, page 1, (With Photo of wrecked airplane.)        

East Providence, R.I. – January 12, 1943

East Providence, Rhode Island – January 12, 1943

Updated December 29, 2015


U.S. Navy SBD auntless National Archives Photo

U.S. Navy SBD auntless
National Archives Photo

     At 3:00 p.m. on January 12, 1943, two U.S. Navy SBD-4 Dauntless aircraft were returning to Quonset Point Naval Air Station after a patrol/photographic  flight when they encountered snow squalls over the Providence metropolitan area and were forced to make emergency landings. 

     One aircraft (Bu. No. 06925) attempted to land in a field near St. Mary’s Seminary on Pawtucket Avenue in East Providence, and in the process collided with a tree and flipped over.  The pilot, Ensign John Robert Jasper, 22, of St. Louis, Missouri, was killed, and his companion, Photographer 3C, Ollen Amay Stevens, 26, of  Detroit, Michigan, was seriously injured.

     St. Mary’s Seminary is today known as St. Mary’s Bay View Academy located at 3070 Pawtucket Avenue.  

    The second aircraft made a hard landing in another field about a quarter of a mile away.  The pilot, Ensign William E. McCarthy, 23, of Mansfield, Mass., and his companion, Seaman Apprentice Edward Goumond, 20, of Johnston, R.I., were slightly injured.      

     Ensign Jasper had just celebrated his 22nd birthday twelve days earlier on December 30th.   His body was brought to Quonset Naval Air Station In North Kingstown, Rhode Island in preparation for burial. He’s buried in Resurrection Cemetery in Afton, Missouri.  To see a picture of his grave go to www.findagrave.com and see Memorial # 47782542. 


     North Kingstown, Rhode Island, death records, #43-17

     Larry Webster, R. I. Aviation Archaeologist & Historian

     Newport Daily News, “Navy Pilot Killed In Crash Upstate”, January 13, 1943, page 12


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