Today in History: Music Star Dies in Wisconsin Plane Crash

Soul Singer, Otis Redding

A plane crash in Madison kills soul singer Otis Redding and members of the Bar-Kays band on this day in 1967.

The plane crashed into Lake Monona, several miles from the Madison airport.

One survivor, Ben Cauley of the Bar-Kays, later reported that he had been asleep until just before the crash.

He saw his friend in the band, Phalon Jones, look out the window of the small plane and screamed “Oh no!” and, before he knew it, he was in a frigid lake holding onto a seat cushion.


“Big Bopper” Richardson and Ritchie Valens, were killed in a crash that is thought to have inspired Don McLean’s well-known song “American Pie.”

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