Thanks to Jill Breitbarth who provided me with a clipping from the New York Times reporting on the crash of Pan Am 217 including a listing of the passengers on the flight. The original posting appeared on this blog several months ago.

Some of the names on the list have typos but it is the only comprehensive listing that I have seen of the passengers and crew on that ill-fated flight.

I will be pleased to correct any typos or inaccuracies if they are brought to my attention.


Franciska Buyers is listed as “Francisca BULLYARD – Stewardess”
Anita Englander is listed as “Anita Engeleand”
Eva Johanson is listed as “Eva Johnson”

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48 Responses to “List of crew and passengers killed on Pan Am 217 – “Clipper Malay””

  1. catherine becker says:

    I had a friend aboard that flight. Anita Englander. Could there be a misspelling in the passenger listed as Engeleand? We both lived in Venezuela.
    Anita was on her way back to Venezuela after attending her son’s college graduation.
    I’ve never forgotten her……I never will.

  2. TJ says:

    Catherine, I am sure that your friend’s name was not spelled correctly……..and “Engeleand” is likely a reference to her.

  3. Vibeke says:

    The same can be said in the case of Eva Johanson. Her name is listed as Johnson.

  4. David Morrow says:

    I was a friend of passenger P. Guttman on Flight 217. His full name was Pablo Guttman, son of Hans Guttman, both of Caracas. He was a
    student at Clarkson College of Technology, Potsdam, New York and studying chemical engineering. An award in his name is given at
    Clarkson each year to an outstanding student in chemical engineering.

    Thank you for your excellent blog!

  5. Sandy says:

    Damaris Rodriguez is listed as “De Maris” Rodriguez

  6. Robert Benavides says:

    Yo creo que estaremos vivos en esta tierra hasta que nos olviden
    y veo que ya pasado 40 años del accidentes hay amigos que todavia
    recuerdan a sus amigos. yo tenia 10 años y todavía me acuerdo del
    accidente y el avion llevaba correspondencia la cual se rescato porque estaba flotando y la cual entrega a sus destinatarios con la nota que fue rescatada del avion de Pan Am siniestrado a 5 minutos
    de Maiquetia. realmente no se las causas del accidente, seria
    por falta de gasolina ?

  7. Nathalie Trottier says:

    Please guide me to the article listing the name of passengers. My grand pa was one of them and I still remember when this happened and my mom crying in my dad s arms. His name was Louis Philippe Lariviere. He was an aawesome grand pa and I missed all my life.

  8. Chris says:

    Who decided my mother’s name was “Clemm”? What?

    She was Patricia Alice Norgan Haynes!

    Just the day or so before she asked a seven year old daughter of a friend of hers about the Christmas presents she had bought for her kids.

    Then six months later that little girl became my step-sister. We have a weird family. But not weird enough that a woman would be called “Clemm.”

    I am trying to see the humor, while typing through the tears… there is no set time for the healing the wounds of a child losing a parent. Even though I got a wrongful death settlement to pay for college, I still grieve. As noted at the bottom of this page.

  9. stephan jancke says:

    my father was on that air plane, I was ten years old at that time. He is listed as Jarcke, J. his correct name was Guenter Jancke.

  10. Juan says:

    My Mom, Gladys Delgado, had made reservations to take this flight back and spend Christmas in Venezuela, she missed it, saving her life, her family was at the airport waiting for her when the accident happened not knowing she was not in the plane. They have a lot of stories and they probably meet some of the other people family… I wonder if there is such as a reservation list for this flight? .

  11. Judy Geva says:

    David Morrow, Paul Guttman was my 1st Cousin.
    I still miss him so much.
    His tragedy became even worth when his brother was killed in 1985 by a private plane crashing into the ocean.

  12. Anna Koffer says:

    Dear David Morrow and Judy Geva, Hans Guttman was my father’s cousin – I knew him and Eva well.
    I live in London and can’t any more get any contact with Hans and Eva. I would be very grateful if you could let me know of any news about them. Best wishes Anna Koffer

  13. John caplan says:

    Iamthe husband of crewmember Heidi Caplan note correct spelling of her name

  14. Judy G. says:

    Dear Anna Koffer,
    I think I replied to you a while back.
    Unfortunately, Hans Passed away 4 yrs. ago.
    Eva is still alive – 93 yrs old. Still in Caracas.

  15. ROXANNE LOGET says:

    “Ambrey, M. – Stewardess” refers to Marianne Ambrey who was just minutes away from receiving “her wings” following this, her training flight. Marianne grew up in Ottawa, Canada, went to school in Ann Arbor, Michigan, then to San Francisco (where we met & became bf’s) then to Miami Stew School. She was 22.

  16. Ricardo Zambrano says:

    Curra Rafael, whose full name was Dr. Rafael Antonio Curra, was a Venezuelan scientist born in Ciudad Bolivar in 1934, a normalist teacher, and professor of biology and chemistry with honors at the Pedagogical Institute of Caracas. His research interests lead him to optain a master’s degree in Marine Zoology at UCLA and a PhD in Marine Morphology at the University of Edinburgh. He was a founding professor of the University of Oriente in Venezuela (UDO) and one of the pioneers in oceanographic studies in Venezuela. The library of the Oceanographic Institute of Venezuela – of which he was director at the time of his death – bears his name.

    Those who knew him in life attest to his great sensitivity and extraordinary human quality, as well as his great professional and intellectual capacity even at an very early age.

    Here you may see a a Rafael’s Photo taken a few month before his dead. He was 34 years old

  17. Anton Buyers says:

    Franciska Buyers is listed as “Francisca BULLYARD – Stewardess”.

    I am Franciska’s brother, Anton, and would like to know what really occurred as Pan Am 217 – “Clipper Malay” was approaching the airport off Caracus.

    Thank you.

  18. Lizzie Lee says:

    To all that are seeing this comment. Some of you posted in one of Rana’s blog the idea to meet this coming December 12, 2018 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the accident and to honor the crew and passengers. I have created a Facebook Page for the event, please, contact me via these replies, or search for the Facebook Page “Pan American Flight 217-Clipper Malay – New York/Maiquetía – Dec 12, 1968”

  19. Lissette Lurker says:

    For those who are wondering what happened to this flight. The information that I’m seeing was inconclusive. They chalk it up to Pilot error related to an optical illusion. That the pilot landed short of the runway into the water. I heard from my family for many years that this explanation didn’t make sense because this pilot had made the trip many times. So it is a mystery.

  20. Lissette Lurker says:

    My condolences to those who lost family members. Our family lost two.

  21. Cameron Kane says:

    Rana, Can you please send my email to Anton Buyers? He posted on April 8, 2018 at 2:00 pm. Francisca and my sister were friends. Thank you.

  22. TJ says:

    Cameron, I emailed Anton at your request and provided him with your email address.

  23. Dear all,
    I am Felicitas Kort, daughter of Sofia Kort Z’L one of the PAA victims on December 12, 1968.
    Once more Lizzie Lee I am impressed by your efforts to contact us – the family members of this unforgettable tragedy.
    Frequently I remember my mom since we had an awesome relationship.

    I live in NYC so please let me know how I can help to organize this honorable event.
    Looking forward to meeting all of you.

  24. Jill says:

    A note to all who might be interested and live in the New York city area: A few of us will be meeting on December 12th starting at 11:30 a.m. in Manhattan for a memorial gathering, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the tragedy. If you would like further details, please either go to the FaceBook page “Pan American Flight 217-Clipper Malay – New York/Maiquetía – Dec 12, 1968″ or post any questions you might have right here on TJ’s blog. Thank you.

  25. Michael says:

    What was the cause this brand new airplane to crash into the sea.I dont believe the previous reason (optical illusion).What took place in that aircraft on that night,

  26. Karin Ruckhaus says:

    Hello David, Judy and Anna,

    My family and the Gutmans were close friends in Caracas. Eva died a couple of years ago, and thus, the nuclear family of Hans, Eva, Pablo and Pedro, is gone. My mother still has lovely photos of our times together. It heartens me to see that others remember them fondly.

  27. Marcia Binder says:

    My oldest girlfriend, somewhat more of a sister to me, was Katherine Kane, a flight attendant killed in this accident. I was a freshman in college when I was called home by my mother to be told the news. Everything changed that day. I will never forget her.

  28. Karen says:

    My grandparents, Dorothy and Joseph Kantor, perished in the flight. They were in their 60’s, I was 12.

    Thank you for remembering all who were lost, as well as those who grieve.

    There’s very little online now that provides anything more than a cursory description.

    Thank you for your efforts.

  29. Ray says:

    This is to Chris who posted above that her mother Patricia Alice Norgan Haynes was lost in the accident. I believe she was married to my Uncle Harvey Haynes (my dad’s brother). My dad’s side of the family was not very close so I don’t know much about them. I thought it was worth mentioning to you that the only time I ever saw my dad cry was when he got the news about your mom. I was only 12 at the time but remember it well. I am so sorry of the pain that you still have after all these years.

  30. Enrique Alfredo Nichols Izaguirre says:

    Nell Violet Nichols Graham is the correct name of my Aunt who is listed as Nelly Nicole Graham. She was born in Port-of-Spain on August 9th, 1909. I have luckily contacted Lizzie and shared with her more details about aunt Nell.

  31. Javier says:

    I grew up knowing about the tragedy of Pan-Am 217, and somehow it is close to my heart. I never met Pablo Guttman as I wasn’t born at the time, but he was a very good friend of my father. My father says he was there at the airport on that fateful day and saw the accident. He and my uncle still get emotional about it over 50 years later. My father continued to be close to the Guttman family over all these years, and I have memories of playing at Hans and Eva Guttman’s beautiful house in Caracas as a child. They were like family to us. They were a lovely couple struck by multiple tragedies as they were holocaust survivors, and lost their two sons on plane accidents. Hans passed on the day that my son was born, so we couldn’t make it to the funeral. We also lost contact with Eva after we moved to the US, but I doubt she’s still alive.

    My condolences go to all who have lost a loved one on Pan-Am 217. I know, and understand how painful it can be.

  32. Sandy says:

    I thought I should mention that we have a private Facebook group, created by Lizzie Lee, for family and friends of those who perished on the Clipper Malay.

    Pan American Flight 217-Clipper Malay – New York/Maiquetía – Dec 12, 1968

    Lizzie has published a book about the event:

    The Lost Lives of the Clipper Malay

  33. Anonymous says:

    Hi Javier, please join the Facebook page. I would like to talk with your father.

    Pan American Flight 217-Clipper Malay – New York/Maiquetía – Dec 12, 1968

  34. Judy geva says:

    Karin Ruckhaus only today did I see you message from Dec. 2018. I never checked this blog after dec 12, 2018. I heard you name mentioned by the Krasa’s if I’m not mistaken.

  35. Judy Geva says:

    Hello Javier, I just saw your post. I’m Eva Gottman’ s 1st cousin. She did pass away 4cyears ago. I live in New York.

  36. Willliam Schutmaat says:

    My brother Jim and I were supposed to be on that plane. As a matter of fact we arrived early and were drinking beer at JFK. When the flight was announced I was reluctant to board the plane for some reason. I asked for another beer. My brother got mad and threatened to push me onto the plane. We tussled and I won out in the end, so we sat back and had another round. Quite drunk by this time, we decided to sleep it off and take the next flight (at that time it was not so difficult to find another flight if you happened to miss yours). We did not find out about the tragedy until the wee hours. My parents, however, were at the airport in Venezuela and were waiting for authorities to begin the search for our bodies! We boarded the next flight to Venezuela and turned up live! I think my parents thought they were seeing ghosts! We still wonder about what me balk at boarding the plane. And I always drink a few beers before boarding a flight to see if the feeling returns. It hasn´t thus far.
    William Schutmaat

  37. Chris says:

    Hi Ray! I am so glad we have reconnected from the youtube of our Aunt Shirley’s dance memorial.

    Since I first posted I learned that women were not allowed to have credit cards in their own names, which is why my mother was listed as “Clemm Haynes.” Knowing her sense of humor this is expected.

  38. Alex Stanley says:

    Hi Chris and Ray!
    I knew very little about this crash and nothing about my extended family.

    I am grateful that we have all connected.

  39. Eugenio Tomassini says:

    Condolences to the victims of PA 217 crash. To those who have a relative among the victims whose name was misspelled.. I am posting this link…there is a commemorative plaque for the 51 casualties. I guess their names must be accurate.

  40. Angel Domingo Sanchez Molina says:

    Mi Tia Aura Elisa Molina viajaba en ese avion junto a su hija (Mi Prima) Coromoto.

  41. Chris says:

    Eugenio Tomassin, thank you because my mother is now recognized with her real name. Gracias por todo.

  42. Chris says:

    OOp… Eugenio Tomassini …I left off very important vowel, sorry about that, and am still thankful for your link.

  43. Roxanne Loget says:

    Today, December 13th, is the day I associate with PanAm flight 217 because it was Friday the 13th when the first news came out about the flight. In San Francisco at 1:00 pm, just after I arrived at work, the phone rang; I heard my roommate’s voice say “Are you sitting down?” A couple moments later my mind went blank and my life started crumbling apart. It doesn’t get easier; it gets harder every year. 54 years ago, now. I remember as if it were yesterday. Thursday, December 12th, 1968, was Marianne Ambery’s most exciting day of her life. Her dream, her passion, was to be “a PanAm stew.” She was on her “training” flight from JFK NY to Caracas, Venezuela. A 3-hour flight at the end of which the pilot would officially pin those most precious, cherished wings onto her PanAm blue uniform lapel. As scheduled, they lifted off at 7:30pm. I know I can’t ever imagine how happy, how excited, how thrilled she was as the minutes ticked by. Eleven miles out over the Atlantic and 6 minutes left as they were in their final descent, her dream ended. The plane exploded. All 51 people aboard died in the warm shark-infested waters. Marianne’s naked body was the last to be recovered. I don’t know how many bodies were recovered by the shocked, alarmed, local fisherman who frantically raced to the wreckage thinking they could, perhaps, save some lives. They recovered as many bodies as they could. Bless their hearts and souls. The first information released by PanAm cited a “crash” caused by “pilot error due to optical illusion.” Corporate damage control had begun. Sometime later in Ottawa, Canada, the stunned and dazed Ambery family members buried their beloved Marianne without the precious wings she dreamed of because PanAm officials deemed it inappropriate to gift those little fake gold wings to Marianne “because she hadn’t completed her training flight.” How cruel. How crass. How corporate. Marianne was the very personification of joie de vivre. Joie de vivire died for me on December 12, 1968 when I was, like Marianne, only 22 years old. 😔

  44. TJ says:

    Roxanne, thanks for posting your moving sentiments and memories of Marianne.

  45. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the information about the flight, my uncle,Luis Gabriel bigott Was on the flight, he did not tell the family about this trip, he want to surprise his girlfriend and took the flight to caracas. The rest is history.
    Now I’m an Arline captain of Emirates Boeing 777. Trying to be the safest pilot in all my flights.

  46. Michaela Herrmann says:

    My parents Petr and Jarmila Herrmann were very close friends with the Guttman’s in Caracas. The death of Pablo was very difficult for us as we knew him, I was 10 at the time of the accident. Pedro was very very very distressed ….We went to the same university Simon Bolivar later on in ‘70. He was a year or so older. Then in the summer of 1985, another phone call came about Pedro. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing when they said there was another plane accident in Los Roques. Was numb. Eva was destroyed, had fever for several days. But Hans and Eva recovered eventually although she couldn’t talk about the sea or beaches again. Eva felt as if the sea has taken both of her sons and so she never again enjoyed Venezuelan Caribe again for that reason.

  47. R Nasser says:

    Condolences to all who lost their loved ones on this flight. My Dad was scheduled to be on this flight, but got a cold and took an earlier Viasa trip a couple of days before – I was born a month later and always wondered about this accident.

    For those who’ve commented on the ‘optical illusion’: this is a well-known phenomenon that plagues flights of all sizes. As a private pilot I’ve experienced this: when there is no real discerning features as in a dark night over a desert or ocean, the illusion is that you feel you are higher than you actually are.

    I’m not saying that this was the cause, but it seems like a logical conclusion based on the Captain’s experience, lack of bad weather, airplane in good condition, etc

    Just thought I’d post to help out

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