You can watch "The Nightmare of Flight 498" in the video player above or stream it on your big screen on the NBCLA app on Roku, Fire TV and Apple TV.

It was Labor Day weekend in 1986, when Aeroméxico flight 498 and a small Piper plane collided in the sky over a Los Angeles suburb.

The collision sent both planes crashing to the ground in Cerritos. The Piper slammed down on an empty playground at Cerritos Elementary School. The Aeroméxico DC-9 nosedived into nearby homes, killing all 64 people on board and 15 people on the ground. Those aboard the Piper, a family of three, were also killed.

NBCLA reporter Hetty Chang, who was 7-years-old at the time, lived in the neighborhood about 25 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles. She witnessed the aftermath, devastation and media coverage that landed in her home town. The events and stories that followed influenced Hetty to pursue a career in journalism. 

"The Nightmare of Flight 498" revisits the plane crash through Hetty’s childhood memories and her experience as a journalist today. She interviews her parents, neighborhood friend and some of the first responders at the crash site. They are all connected by the crash of flight 498.

Los Angeles County rescue personnel work within the debris field after mid-air collision with Aeromexico Flight 498 and Piper Archer aircraft, August 31,1986 in Cerritos, California. (Photo by Getty Images/Bob Riha, Jr.)
A DC-9 aircraft crashed into the Los Angeles suburb homes killing 67 on both aircraft and 15 additional people on the ground. (Photo by Getty Images/Bob Riha, Jr.)
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