On November 1, 1959 rescue teams reached Phil Bradley, the sole survivor of the crash of Piedmont Airlines Flight 349. The plane flew into Buck’s Elbow Mountain the evening of October 30th as it was approaching Charlottesville Albemarle Airport. Bradley was seriously injured and lay there in the wilderness until the crews could locate the crash site and search for survivors. Bradley would live another 54 years. He passed away this August.
Photographer Ed Roseberry was on the mountain that day and got several photos of the rescue of Bradley:
In 2009, Phil James published this account of the tragedy.
That same month, Hawes Spencer covered the story in The Hook.
You can also visit a Facebook page about Flight 349 and Phil Bradley which includes an hour-by-hour account of Bradley’s ordeal.
Buck’s Elbow Mountain as viewed from the North in the air. The top of the ridge is about 3000 ft., one of the highest points in the area. The mountain is heavily wooded and has step terrain.The crash site of Piedmont Flight 349 is near the top of the ridge (upper, center area in this photograph). This view is looking west. The aircraft most likely flew into the mountain from this direction.
All black and white photographs by Ed Roseberry and scanned for use by C’ville Images. Please do not use any images from this website without permission.