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    Seventy nine people lost their lives on Sunday night in the worst air disaster in Canadian history.

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    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: Seventy nine people lost their lives on Sunday night in the worst air disaster in Canadian history. All the 73 passengers, returning from holiday in Britain, and the crew of six were killed when a Skymaster plane of Maritime Central Airways crashed in flames about 18 miles south west of Quebec City.

    The plane had been chartered by an Ontario ex-Servicemen's association to carry a group of Canadians and their wives back to their homes from their British holiday.

    All was well when the aircraft checked with Quebec shortly before the crash, but a violent thunderstorm was in progress in the vicinity.

    When the plane became overdue at the Montreal check-point en route for Toronto, air force and civilian planes took off and spotted the blazing wreckage in swampy, forest land near the French-Canadian village of Issoudun.

    Debris is scattered over several miles of the area and the main part of the wreckage is sinking slowly into waterlogged ground at the edge of a forest.

    It is thought that the plane hit the ground, nose first, and somersaulted. Its body was flung more than 500 feet ahead of the engines. Pieces of clothing and equipment were left hanging from trees as parts of the plane were thrown through the woods.

    Early on Tuesday, search parties and investigators were still looking for the bodies of some passengers. Fragments of the plane were examined for possible clues on the cause of the disaster, but many of the heavy pieces have sunk already into the swampy ground.

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    Reuters - Source to be Verified
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