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Buddy Holly Plane Crash: Officials Consider Reopening Investigation

03/05/2015 10:56 EST | Updated 03/05/2015 10:59 EST

The world of music wasn't the same after February 3, 1959, when a plane carrying musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and JP Richardson (a.k.a. The Big Bopper) crashed in a blizzard.

A few months later, the Civil Aeronautics Board in the United States blamed the accident primarily on the pilot's lack of qualification and certification to fly solely by instruments, and secondarily on an inadequate understanding of the blizzard's severity.

Now, over 50 years later, there's a possibility that the investigation into the crash may be reopened after a request for re-examination.

The request came from L.J. Coon, a pilot who has made his own investigation into the crash. Coon believes that the finding of the Civil Aeronautics Board in 1959 is unfair to Roger Peterson, the 21-year-old pilot who died along with the three musicians.

In 1959, Holly, Valens and Richardson were part of the Winter Dance Party tour. The musicians had travelled in subfreezing temperatures in unheated buses, and people were getting sick. Holly booked the airplane ride to Fargo, North Dakota, where he planned to rest before the group's next concert in Minnesota. (Waylon Jennings, Holly's bass player, gave up his seat to a sick Richardson. Jennings, who died in 2002, was haunted by his decision for years.)

The crash has been immortalized in film and music, most notably "La Bamba," the story of Ritchie Valens, which was released in 1987.

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