Thomas G. Doty

Flight 11 Memorial in Unionville, Missouri (photo courtesy Wikipedia Commons)

Flight 11 Memorial in Unionville, Missouri (photo courtesy Wikipedia Commons)

Shortly before Continental Airlines flight 11 went down May 22, 1962, Thomas Doty, a married man with a five-year-old daughter, had purchased six sticks of dynamite for 29 cents each, and placed the explosives in the used towel bin of the plane’s right rear lavatory. The resulting explosion brought the plane down near Unionville, Missouri, killing all 45 crew and passengers on board.

Doty had purchased a life insurance policy from Mutual of Omaha for $150,000, the maximum available. He also had another $150,000 in additional insurance (some purchased at the airport) and death benefits. Doty had recently been arrested for armed robbery and was to soon face a preliminary hearing in the matter.

Author Arthur Hailey based a subplot of his 1968 novel Airport on the Flight 11 bombing.