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Michael Bushfield, Eureka, MT, is the winner!

Alva W. Blackerby is the answer for Clearwater History Trivia #617, a special feature to celebrate the history and heritage of Clearwater Country.

Join in the discovery!

Monday: 1959

Tuesday: A ridge with his name

Wednesday: A short tenure

Thursday: Spent a number of years in Alaska

Friday: A supervisor

Saturday: Co-wrote a book

Monday: Among those killed

Alva W. Blackerby was the 50 year old supervisor of the Nez Perce National Forest when the Ford Tri-motor he was riding in crashed in the Idaho backcountry at Moose Creek. After the crash, he was initially taken to the hospital in Grangeville and later transferred to Emanuel Hospital where he died of burns suffered in the accident.

The crash also claimed the lives of two smokejumpers from New York and injured the pilot and a smokejumper supervisor. The plan over ran the runway due to a sudden gust of wind and crashed into a stack of gasoline barrels and exploded, according to information in the Oregonian Aug. 24, 1959 and Lewiston Tribune June 14, 2009.

Blackerby was a native of Portland and graduated from Benson High School and University of Oregon. He received his master's degree in forestry from Oregon State College. He spent a number of years in Alaska with the US Forest Service before being named the supervisor of the Nez Perce National Forest in 1957.

He and his wife, Hazel, had one son, Kirk.

His death hit the personnel of the Nez Perce National Forest hard because "Blackie" was a popular leader.

His name lives on with a ridge in Alaska and other locations on the Nez Perce National Forest including a picnic area being called Blackerby.

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