Historic Markers Across Florida

Cosson Family Tragedy

Marker ID: FLHM F-741
Location: On Cosson Rd, south of Pleasant Ridge Rd., DeFuniak Springs, Florida
County: Walton
Coordinates: N 30° 39.271    W 086° 10.477
  30.65451666    -86.17461666
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMNVMP


In 1936, James Marvin Cosson Sr. moved his family to this location about one-half mile east of the Eglin Army Airfield to have more land to farm and to provide for his wife, Annie Bell Cosson, and their four children. During World War II, Eglin Airfield served as a major testing and training ground for bombing missions. The Army Air Corps regularly performed training missions at the Eglin bombing range, located about three miles west of the Cosson home. On the evening of August 11, 1944, as nine members of the Cosson family gathered at the house to socialize, live fragmentation bombs accidentally began to fall on the family homestead. Two bombs fell near the house, killing four and seriously injuring five members of the Cosson family. The accident occurred during a normal bombing test run and was attributed to the failure of a mechanical releasing device, which caused the aircraft's bombs not to be released until after the plane had traveled past the bombing test area. Other training accidents took place in Florida during World War II, but the Cosson family tragedy was the worst of the war. In 1980, Congress passed a bill providing a yearly payment to the most seriously injured survivor of the Cosson family tragedy.

2012 The Walton County Board of County Commissioners
and the Florida Department of State