CLEVELAND -- It's been 17 years since TWA Flight 800 crashed into the Atlantic, killing everyone on board. Now a new film claims to show a government cover-up of what really happened during one of the deadliest passenger plane crashes in history.
Instead of a fuel-tank explosion, a small group of former investigators are reigniting the theory that a missile brought down the plane on its way from New York to Paris.
While time has healed the hearts of those who knew the victims of TWA flight 800, but it's only raised more questions about what happened.
Sandra Hazelton and her daughter Case Western Reserve University student Katrina Rose were two of 230 victims. In the summer of 1996, Sandy and Trina were set for a trip to celebrate in Paris.
A well known high school French teacher, Hazelton's memory is archived at Orange High School.
"It was just the two of them, the girls taking a trip to France," said Kay Voss-Hoynes, a fellow foreign language teacher.
"They were going to just have the greatest time. Sandy was going to show her everything, everything possible," she said.
Then news came that the 747 had exploded, "there was a lot of disbelief, and then shock."
Investigators found it was an explosion in the center fuel tank that brought the plane down 12 miles out over the Atlantic.
Now new film claims the government either ignored or covered up witness accounts and evidence of a missile.
"TWA Flight 800 exploded as a result of an explosion exterior from the outside of the aircraft," said Hank Hughes, a former senior investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board who was one of the original investigators. "There's no physical evidence to support that the center fuel tank exploded."
"There was a speculation, you know when certain people, thought that it might not be as mechanically driven as it supposedly was reported to be," remembers Carole Moore, who also worked at Orange High School with Hazelton.
Six former investigators are petitioning the NTSB to reopen the evidence, saying radar data corroborates eye witness reports from July 17, 1996 of an explosion outside the aircraft.
The developments, right or wrong, here seem tragic.
"It's going to make people hurt all over again," said Voss-Hoynes, "And I don't know, yes, we should know the truth, but is it worth it all the time?"
The NTSB says it will consider the petition, but spent four years on the investigation, one of the most extensive in its history.
The board says the petition must be able to show new evidence or an error in the process, and some say that's simply not true.
The documentary "TWA Flight 800" will premiere July 17, the anniversary of the crash on the EPIX TV network.