A Hemingway Christmas & New Year Flop



EH 4463P January 1954 Crashed Cessna 180 that carried Ernest and Mary Hemingway. Uganda, near Murchison Falls. Photograph in the Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library, Boston

Perhaps Hemingway’s most eventful year was 1954. In Africa, Hemingway was almost fatally injured in two successive plane crashes. He chartered a sightseeing flight over the Belgian Congo as a Christmas present to his fourth wife, Mary Welsh. On their way to photograph Murchison Falls from the air, the plane struck an abandoned utility pole and crash landed in heavy brush. Hemingway’s injuries included a head wound, while Mary broke two ribs. The next day, attempting to reach medical care in Entebbe, they boarded a second plane that exploded at take-off. Hemingway suffered burns and another concussion, this one serious enough to cause leaking of cerebral fluid. They eventually arrived in Entebbe to find reporters covering the story of Hemingway’s death. He briefed the reporters and spent the next few weeks recuperating and reading his erroneous obituaries. – Edgar


– altered by Hystoria


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