The photos were contributed by Gary Goularte on behalf of he and his
cousins, Leslie Robinett,
Bob Selff and Stephanie Goodrich, as a memorial to their grandfather,
Captain Robert E. Selff.
On October 2, 1934, Captain Robert E. Selff, Commanding Officer of
the famous 11th Bombardment Group ("Mr. Jiggs") was
piloting a Martin B-12A bomber when clear air turbulence caused one
wing to separate from the aircraft.
The plane crashed into a snow covered canyon in the Inyo National
Forest near the Mammoth Ranger Station, about 50 miles north of the
town of Bishop, killing Captain Selff and two other crew members. A
fourth crew member saw the wing's aileron vibrating wildly and
parachuted from the craft just before the wing failed. The aircraft
was part of a group of 20 aircraft making a formation flight to
Yosemite from March Field.
Captain Selff entered the Army Air Service during World War I. He
graduated from the photographic training school at Langley Field,
Virginia, and served at many posts in the US and abroad in variety of
roles, including test pilot. In 1931 he was transferred to March
Field, California, and eventually served as adjutant.
Captain Selff's flight log book showed 2,633 hours prior to his last
flight. He flew a large variety of aircraft during his career.