My sister produced this amazing online project about the 1-35W bridge collapse. It’s truly an amazing piece of work. Please check it out when you get a chance and take a moment to remember all the individuals involved in this tragedy.
They were stuck in Minneapolis traffic on their way home from work.
They were bound for the Metrodome to see the Twins play the Royals. They were going to spend time with in-laws, work out, pick up a child from the sitter, teach a folk dancing class, eat at an African restaurant, deliver a truckload of bread to Iowa. Alongside the cars were workers in hard hats, laying down a new surface of concrete on a nondescript 40-year-old highway bridge.
Then the 35W bridge collapsed into the Mississippi River. At that moment, the lives of nearly 200 people were suddenly and irrevocably linked.
The Star Tribune has identified the drivers and occupants of 76 of 84 cars, trucks and other non-construction vehicles that remained on the bridge or sank in the river, as well as six of the road construction workers. Each number on this aerial photo represents who was on the bridge that evening. Click on the numbers to read their stories, hear their voices and see the faces of the survivors and the relatives of those who died.
Thirteen people were killed as their cars crashed or the water overcame them. One hundred forty-four others suffered cuts, broken backs, crushed legs and other injuries in the cascade of concrete, steel and water. The number who carry the wounds in their minds is much larger – the next-of-kin, the witnesses, the rescuers, those who got off the bridge seconds earlier or took a last-minute detour.