POINT PLEASANT — This year will mark the 45th anniversary of the Silver Bridge Disaster, and the Point Pleasant River Museum is planning a special remembrance on the anniversary — Dec. 15.
Staff at the river museum are planning the event and want to honor the 46 victims who lost their lives on Dec. 15, 1967. Museum staff are asking the public for contact information on family members of victims. They are also in need of photos of the victims. Though some photos were submitted and placed in a new book on the disaster, photos on other victims were never located. These pictures will be displayed, and a candle will be lit as the name of each victim is read by Alice Williamson Click and Mayor Brian Billings during the remembrance.
Family and friends of the victims, as well as the public, are invited to the remembrance ceremony which begins at 2 p.m., Dec. 15 at the Point Pleasant River Museum. Denise Bonecutter will be singing, Pastor Roger Bonecutter, who operated a boat for City Ice and Fuel at the time of the disaster, will be speaking, and retired W.Va. State Trooper Rudy O’Dell, who was the first law enforcement officer on the W.Va. side to the scene of the collapse, will be available to answer questions.
Also, co-authors Stephan Bullard and his student Bridget Gromek from Hartford, Conn. will discuss how their new book, “The Silver Bridge Disaster of 1967” came to be published. Following the program, Bullard and Gromek will be signing books along with co-authors Martha and Ruth Fout who work at the museum. Books already purchased at the river museum have Martha and Ruth’s autographs and readers are welcome to bring their previously purchased books to the event to get the autographs of Bullard and Gromek.
“We would like to have as many family members of the victims attend this remembrance as possible as well as others, therefore we need the help of those who read this to help us get in touch with them,” said Fout.
Admission to the museum is free on the day of the remembrance. For any questions or if you have information on victims of the disaster, call 304-674-0144.