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Grand Canyon ceremonies honor 1956 plane crash victims

The severed tail of the TWA Constellation that crashed at the Grand Canyon in 1956, as photographed by park rangers during the CAB investigation (Wikimedia Photo)

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz. -- The victims of a 1956 plane crash at the Grand Canyon are being remembered in a dedication ceremony.

The crash site recently was designated a national historic landmark. A public dedication ceremony is scheduled July 8 at the Desert View Amphitheater that overlooks the site.

Two planes collided on June 30, 1956 as they were flying 21,000 feet over the canyon near the confluence of the Colorado and Little Colorado rivers. All 128 people aboard the two flights died.

Officials at the Grand Canyon are commemorating the anniversary of the collision Monday with wreath-laying ceremonies at two cemeteries.

The crash spurred discussion in Congress on managing airspace and controlling air traffic. Improvements that came as a result of the crash include collision avoidance systems and flight data recorders.

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