December 13th 2019 marks 42 years since the day Evansville "cried purple tears."

42 years ago today Air Indiana flight 216 crashed just after takeoff from the Evansville Regional Airport.  On board was the 1977 University of Evansville men's basketball team. They were on their way to a game in Tennessee.

29 people lost their lives that day.  Today, University of Evansville is hosting a special bell ringing to honor those lives lost. They posted the following to their Facebook:

“Out of the agony of this hour we will rise.”On the 42nd anniversary of the December 13,1977 plane crash, we remember those who passed away, including UE basketball team members, coaches, administrators, and fans.

Today at noon, the UE community is invited to honor those who perished. The UE Interfaith Peace Bell will be rung 29 times--once for each of those who perished--followed by a moment of silence and peace in remembrance.

I was born many years after the plane crash, but I always knew the impact it had on the community. My Nana worked on campus at UE as a grill cook, and knew many of the guys on the team. She said they came in regularly and would always talk with her about their days, and the basketball season, and give her a hard time about her east coast accent.  She said they were all such great stand-up young men, who were always very kind.  To this day when she talks about the 1977 plane crash she tears up.  She said they all had such bright futures ahead and were "such good kids."
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