Wikipedia gives us this about her death:
When the US entered World War II at the end of 1941, Lombard traveled to her home state of Indiana for a war bond rally with her mother, Bess Peters, and Clark Gable's press agent Otto Winkler. After raising over $2 million in defense bonds, Lombard addressed her fans, saying: "Before I say goodbye to you all, come on and join me in a big cheer! V for Victory!" On January 16, 1942, Lombard, her mother, and Winkler boarded a Transcontinental and Western Airlines DC-3 airplane to return to California. After refueling in Las Vegas, TWA Flight 3 took off and 23 minutes later, crashed into "Double Up Peak" near the 8,300 ft (2,500 m) level of Mount Potosi, 32 statute miles (51 km) southwest of Las Vegas. All 22 aboard, including 15 army servicemen, were killed instantly.
Shortly after her death at the age of 33, Gable (who was inconsolable and devastated by her loss) joined the United States Army Air Forces. After officers training, Gable headed a six-man motion picture unit attached to a B-17 bomb group in England to film aerial gunners in combat, flying five missions himself. Gable attended the launch of the Liberty ship SS Carole Lombard, named in her honor, on January 15, 1944.
On January 18, 1942, Jack Benny did not perform his usual program, both out of respect for Lombard and grief at her death. Instead, he devoted his program to an all-music format.
Lombard's final film, To Be or Not to Be (1942), directed by Ernst Lubitsch and co-starring Jack Benny, a satire about Nazism and World War II, was in post-production at the time of her death. The film's producers decided to cut the part of the film in which her character asks, "What can happen on a plane?" as they felt it was in poor taste, given the circumstances of Lombard's death.
At the time of her death, Lombard had been scheduled to star in the film They All Kissed the Bride; when production started, her role was given to Joan Crawford. Crawford donated all of her pay for this film to the Red Cross.
Lombard is interred at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California. The name on her crypt marker is "Carole Lombard Gable". Although Gable remarried, he was interred next to her when he died in 1960. Bess Peters was also interred beside her daughter .
The hike was reported to be a bear. Very steep terrain with constant brush encounters. The approach road was also in very bad condition with large boulders blocking the road and deep trenches to drive through.
Jerry Thomas offers these clear photos seen in this entry and describes the crash site as being scattered all over the mountainside with even the tiniest of parts still laying among the brush from the beginning of the hike to the top. The largest part that is still in basically one piece is one of the jet engines found near the actual site of impact as seen in Jerry's photo to the left.
UPDATE (2/7/14) - We have recently learned that the engine actually belongs to a different smaller plane that crashed near the same spot in 1944. When we get more information on this crash, look for a new blog entry detailing this crash.
This little fella was found near the cars on the hikers' return later that day. Mike O'C. related the tale to the writer.
I figured I'd abandoned all my snake confrontations once I'd left NTS. Hah!
A dozen of us hiked up to Mt. Potosi this week in search of the Carole Lombard TWA wreck of 1942. We found the plane scattered all over the mountain, but no sign of Carole or anyone else. Incredibly steep terrain.
Six hours after starting, I got back to the trailhead and was approaching the car. Damn near stepped on Señor Rattler before he tactfully alerted me of his presence. I jumped and hollered at the same time. I thought it was an anaconda! Or a cobra! Scared the *%#@ out of me.
Of all the ones I've seen on the Test Site, I had never seen one this lightly colored. Almost blonde.
Something's always out to get ya, eh?"