There were 29 people on the flight that day, including Marian Davis, the spouse of Paraguay’s U.S. Ambassador. No one, however, would survive the terrible accident that tragically occurred just a few hours after takeoff.
When the plane was getting close to La Paz, the pilot informed the airport’s ground-control staff that he was due to land in ten minutes. But the touchdown never happened; instead, for reasons unknown, the plane steered dramatically off course.
Just 25 miles from El Alto Airport, Eastern Air Lines Flight 980 crashed into Mt. Illimani, high in the Bolivian Andes. At almost 20,000 feet, the crash site remains the highest area of an accident involving a commercial aircraft.