Deadliest Day Relived From the Air

5-10-04 - As the anniversary of the deadliest day in the history of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol nears, First News teamed up with troopers to help reconstruct what happened on May 26, 1978.

A KXII photographer rode along with an OHP helicopter to capture aerial footage of a re-enactment of the two separate shootouts that killed three troopers and two escapees in rural Bryan County.

The escaped murderers had been on the run for 33 days when lawmen cornered them in Kenefic and Caddo. Two troopers died in an initial gun battle with the men in Kenefic. Later, as they fled to Caddo, the outlaws killed another trooper and made on final stand at a house. Both events unfolded in just 13 minutes.

Today’s efforts are part of a training video being made about the events that led up to the shootouts. OHP troopers say the idea is to train future troopers and keep a similar tragedy from happening again.

From the air, the helicopter and photographer tracked the exact route the patrol cars took back in 1978 as authorities searched for a stolen blue pickup along county roads. Last month, troopers used their new laser mapping equipment and mapped out where each patrol car, lawman and escaped prisoner were at the time of the standoffs.

The training video will also be available to the public on DVD and VHS on May 26th. To learn more about the shootouts in 1978, click here