On October 2, 1934, Captain Robert E. Selff, Commanding Officer of the famous 11th Bombardment Group ("Mr. Jiggs") was piloting a Martin B-12A bomber when clear air turbulence caused one wing to separate from the aircraft.
The plane crashed into a snow covered canyon in the Inyo National Forest near the Mammoth Ranger Station, about 50 miles north of the town of Bishop, killing Captain Selff and two other crew members. A fourth crew member saw the wing's aileron vibrating wildly and parachuted from the craft just before the wing failed. The aircraft was part of a group of 20 aircraft making a formation flight to Yosemite from March Field.
Captain Selff entered the Army Air Service during World War I. He graduated from the photographic training school at Langley Field, Virginia, and served at many posts in the US and abroad in variety of roles, including test pilot. In 1931 he was transferred to March Field, California, and eventually served as adjutant.
Captain Selff's flight log book showed 2,633 hours prior to his last flight. He flew a large variety of aircraft during his career.