UTA Flight 772 monument

(I wish I knew who took these photographs, please let me know if you know, so I can show credit, where credit is due!)

This beautiful and amazing series of pictures are from the making of the memorial to UTA Flight 772 – a large plane crash in the Sahara Desert. This is a memorial in the middle of the desert where the wreckage was found and therefore is one of the most isolated and least accessable memorial in the world.

On Tuesday, 19 September 1989 the UTA Flight 772 of the French airline Union des Transports Aériens took off from N’Djamena International Airport at 13:13. The flight was a scheduled flight operating from Brazzaville in the People’s Republic of Congo, via N’Djamena in Chad, to Paris CDG airport in France.

46 minutes later, at its cruising altitude of 10,700 metres (35,100 ft), a bomb explosion caused UTA Flight 772 to break up over the Sahara Desert near the towns of Bilma and Ténéré in Niger. All 155 passengers and 15 crew members died.

1 2 318 years later, the memorial was created by Les Familles de l’Attentat du DC-10 d’UTA, an association of the victims’ families along with the help of local inhabitants.4 5 6 7 8 9The memorial was built mostly by hand and uses dark stones to create a 200-foot diameter circle shipped from 70 km away.  10 11 12 13 14 15 16170 broken mirrors, representing each victim, were placed around the circumference of the memorial. 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25The memorial was partly funded by the $170 million compensation package provided by the Libyan government. 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33The memorial can be seen from Google Earth – 16.864882,11.953737. 34 35