New Memorial Dedication Planned for 1996 Oroville U-2 Crash

Nov 21, 2013 6:21 PM

More than 17 years later, the two victims of the 1996 U-2 plane crash in Oroville get a new memorial.

Cal Fire and Butte County Fire are planning a dedication ceremony tomorrow at their Nelson Avenue location. That’s across the street from where Air Force Captain Randy Roby ejected out of the plane before it crashed.

Roby died, along with Oroville resident Geraldine Vering, who was paying her bill at the Oroville Mercury-Register on Second Street.

For two residents of Oroville's Thermalito neighborhood, the day is still fresh in their minds.

“My thought was, oh my lord, that could have been me because that's how I paid by bill back then,” said Northwestern Trading Co. employee Carol Uhl.

“My middle son and I were in the backyard and we were hanging out clothes,” said Sierra Gem Co. Owner Nikki Smith. We heard a loud noise, looked up, and saw the guy in the seat, the pilot.”

County, fire, and Beale Air Force Base officials will be at tomorrow's dedication ceremony.

The public is also invited to the dedication, located at 176 Nelson Avenue, Oroville.


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