Otis Redding Perishes in Plane Crash

On December 10, 1967, the legendary R&B singer Otis Redding and four members of his back-up band, the Bar-Kays, were among six people killed in the crash of a Beechcraft 18 into Lake Monona while on approach to Madison, Wisconsin. Redding was 26 years old.

Otis Redding in front of his airplane

The weather on the fateful day was poor in Madison, with fog, rain and poor visibility. Four miles from their destination at Truax Field in Madison, the pilot radioed for permission to land. Shortly thereafter, the plane crashed into Lake Monona. The cause of the crash was never determined.

Redding’s iconic (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay became the first posthumous number-one record on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts after his death.

Redding’s Beechcraft being lifted from the lake