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We Are Marshall

March 25, 2012 by staff 

We Are Marshall, We Are Marshall is a 2006 American drama film directed by McG about the aftermath of the 1970 plane crash that killed 37 football players on the Marshall University Thundering Herd football team as well as five coaches, two athletic trainers, the athletic director, 25 boosters and a crew of five. It also addresses the rebuilding of the program and the healing that the community undergoes.

It stars Matthew McConaughey as head coach Jack Lengyel, Matthew Fox as assistant coach William “Red” Dawson, David Strathairn as University President Donald Dedmon and Robert Patrick as ill-fated Marshall head coach Rick Tolley. Former Georgia governor George “Sonny” Perdue has a cameo role as an East Carolina University football coach. The movie is rated PG.

The movie was scored by Christophe Beck and written by Jamie Linden. Dr. Keith Spears was the Marshall University consultant.

On the evening of November 14 ,1970, Southern Airways Flight 932, a McDonnell Douglas DC-9 which Huntington, West Virginia’s Marshall University chartered to transport the Thundering Herd football team to Greenville, North Carolina via Stallings Field in Kinston, North Carolina and back to Huntington, clipped trees on a ridge just one mile short of the runway at Tri-State Airport in Ceredo, West Virginia and crashed into a gully.

The team was returning from their game against the East Carolina University Pirates – a 17-14 loss. There were no survivors. In all, 75 people lost their lives. The deceased included the 37 players; head coach Rick Tolley and five members of his coaching staff; Charles E. Kautz, Marshall’s athletics director; team athletic trainer Jim Schroer and his assistant, Donald Tackett; 25 boosters; and five crew members.

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