MCAS Miramar Ghost Marine Corp Air Station Spirit Haunt:
Hanger 1 is haunted by the crew of a f-8 crusader that crashed there in the late 1960’s
This is the official press release from 2004 Marine Corps News Release Date: 1/09/2004 Story by Cpl. Tara Dawn Smith
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION MIRAMAR, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2004) — History is something that lives anew whenever events and lives of the past are revisited for reflection or examination. However, it seems that in the case of Hangar One, occasionally history visits the present … in the form of ghosts.
According to Joe Glasser, Martin-Baker representative at Miramar, there are those who have encountered the non-corporeal inhabitants of the hangar. Glasser explained one such ghostly event occurred one late afternoon when then Naval Air Station Miramar was transitioning into Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.
An officer, from Marine Aircraft Group 11 then located at MCAS El Toro, knocked on the hatch of Glasser’s office and explained he would be surveying the offices in the hangar’s upstairs. Twenty minutes passed and again the officer was at Glasser’s hatch.
This time however, the officer was out of breath and visibly lighter in color, said Glasser. When the Marine officer was able to articulate his concern, he asked if there were reports of unusual occurrences in the catwalks of the building. Glasser commented that he had heard rumors of “visitations from a netherly realm,” but hadn’t experienced first hand accounts. The officer then related his account of the events from his inspection of the upper offices in the hangar.
Long hallways upstairs make it difficult for some to slip away from view quickly. So, when the MAG-11 officer heard footsteps and saw an opaque shadow through the frosted glass of the office, he expected to be greeted by someone walking the corridors. What he found appeared to be quite unsettling, said Glasser.
When the officer opened the door to look for the person generating the footsteps and shadow, he saw nothing more than an empty hallway.
These brushes with the supernatural begs the question, what past events of the hangar could cause it to be possessed by former and now deceased residents of the building? Jim Bradbury, the Martin-Baker representative in 1969, might know something about the haunted history of Hangar One.
Bradbury explained he was visiting the base on business on Dec. 22, 1969 when he witnessed a tragic event that left 14 dead.
The pilot of an F-8 crusader of Fighter Squadron 191 safely ejected over Kearny Villa Rd. after the engine of the plane seized, but the plane continued its course that passed through the hangar doors crashing into the north wall. The crash sent fuel spilling that ignited and engulfed several mechanics in the hangar. One ejection seat mechanic was working on a seat in a plane at the time of the event and was ejected into the roof of the hangar. Six F-4 phantoms stationed in the hangar were destroyed in the collision. Fissures that are still visible in the wall of the hangar serve as a scar of the crash.
The hauntings and lasting damage to the hangar aren’t the only way this tragedy, and sacrifice of servicemembers who paid the ultimate price, live on.
A more concrete monument that stands as a testament to the event is a memorial located on the golf course that commemorates those killed in Hangar One on Dec. 22, 1969. A plaque with the names of all the deceased rests south of the driving range keeping the memory and history of those servicemembers alive.