The Day the Music Died
Wednesday, 3rd February 2010 by Noel Ballantyne
Today, February 3rd, is the 51st anniversary of the death of Buddy Holly.
The day before his death, Buddy Holly and associated acts Dion & The Belmonts, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, had played the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa. After issues with their tour bus, and due to appear in Moorhead, Minnesota the next night, the group decided to charter a small plane from the nearby Mason Airport.
There was only space on the small plane for 3 passengers, so there was much debate as to who would fly. Dion DiMucci of Dion & The Belmonts had turned down a seat on the plane, and Ritchie Valens won his seat in a coin toss. One of Holly’s bandmates had given up his seat for J. P. Richardson, jokingly saying “I hope your plane crashes”.