NOT TO WORRY, THE SILVER BRIDGE ALWAYS SWAYED

(12/15/2007)

By Bob Weaver

Forty years ago in 1967 the Silver Bridge collapsed into the Ohio River, killing 46 people.

The event has been surrounded by urban legends, creatures, men in black, many reaching the silver screen.

Attending Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science, we frequently crossed the structure to attend college.

My son Eric was just a few months old, a babe in the lap of my first wife Sharon, when we crossed the bridge just one day before it collapsed.

It was not unusual that the bridge swayed and vibrated, particularly when heavy 18-wheelers crossed the structure, or traffic got bumper-to-bumper.

It caused a fascinating sensation for the occupants of a car.

People often consoled those who got nervous, including myself, by telling them "Thats the way the bridge was built. It's suppose to do that."

Sharon would often comment "This thing feels like it's going to fall down."

At 4:55 p.m. that day during rush hour, the traffic light at the start of the bridge wasn’t working, cars and trucks backed up, causing a bumper to bumper traffic jam.

The eyebar chain suspension bridge was built in 1928, connecting Pt. Pleasant WV and Gallopolis OH.

Investigation later pointed to a crack in a single eye-bar as the cause of the collapse.

One of the urban legends about the bridge was made into the movie "The Mothman Prophecies."


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