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Tri-State Airport


Located on a Wayne County hilltop just off Interstate 64 west of Huntington, Tri-State Airport offers airline service to passengers from a large area of West Virginia, Kentucky, and Ohio. The airport was dedicated November 2, 1952, with the first official landing made at 11:00 a.m. by Piedmont Airlines, followed by an Eastern Air Lines flight at 11:30.

The opening of Tri-State Airport returned regularly scheduled air service to the Huntington area for the first time since 1945, when American Airlines discontinued serving the Chesapeake Airport, a small field located just across the Ohio River from Huntington. Tri-State Airport’s construction came after 30 years of effort by Huntington political and civic leaders. It is owned by a conglomerate of public and quasi-public agencies and operated by the Tri-State Airport Authority, whose members are appointed by those agencies.

The airport was the scene of a tragic crash on the night of November 14, 1970, when a chartered jet airliner carrying the Marshall University football team slammed into a hillside as it approached for landing. All 75 people aboard—players, coaches, fans, and crew—were killed.

Written by James E. Casto