Transcribed from the Ellensburg Daily Record, Ellensburg, WA, December 1, 1947, page 4:
Plane Survivors Agreed on Luck
Passengers Had To Dash Through Flames To Escape
SEATTLE, Dec. 1–(AP)– Although all were burned in varying degrees, those survivors able to recount the experiences of yesterday’s crash of an Alaska Airlines transport agreed today that each was lucky to be alive.
Said Mrs. Selma Olson, 51, Olympia, who suffered burned legs and facial burns:
“We had to dash right through the flames to get away from the plane. I don’t know how we made it.”
Mrs. Olson, who had been working in Anchorage, was on her way “outside” to meet the body of her son, Frederick C. Olson, a tank trooper killed in Germany March 25, 1945, whose remains are being returned from overseas to Springfield, Mo. Her husband, Cris Olson of Olympia, a truck driver for the Civil Aeronautics Authority at Anchorage, was to follow by another plane Saturday night.
“It was foggy, and we were trying to land,” she continued. “There was some talk of our trying to fly on to Portland. The passengers were calm. Then the pilot landed us at Bow Lake airport.
“We were all so happy when we hit the runway. We said: ‘Boy, we made it!’ Then we saw the end of the runway coming at us. The next thing we knew, the plane was on fire.
“There were no flames inside the plane, at first. The men in the back broke the door open. I jumped out right into the flames, and ran through them. I sprained my ankle, besides getting burned. But I guess I’m lucky to be alive.”
Walter Koch, 34, of Snohomish, burned on the hand and face, recalled that the stewardess tried to open the door of the plane after the crash.
“The door was sprung shut. Some of the men passengers broke it open,” Koch said. “The ground outside was afire (from gasoline leaking out of the broken left wing tanks.) We dove through it in getting out. A man was lying under the horizontal stabilizer. They dragged him over to the pavement, and later on I saw his hand moving, so he wasn’t dead.”