Nation: The Worst U.S. Air Crash

Taking off from Chicago, a DC-10 ends in charred fragments

At 3 on a sunny Friday afternoon, thousands of Chicago motorists lucky enough to get off to a fast start on the long Memorial Day weekend streamed out along Interstate 90. Brisk winds rippled the green field between the crowded highway and O'Hare International Airport. Half an hour later, the field was shrouded in black smoke, and firemen held hoses on a flaming aircraft engine. Police and other emergency workers stepped gingerly through scattered and smoldering wreckage, looking for signs of life. They found...

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