. And let us say now that this article is not a debunking piece, but simply a perusal of an incident that has grown to the stature of a myth a legend that begs to be more expertly examined. Having not crossed Florida, nor gone south and around the Keys, a flight that would have taken an hour or so, more time than they had been aloft before they had started flying NE and E, the evidence is clear that the flight leader was seriously lost. HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate. I'm coming to meet you anyhow." A review of the records reveals that a transcript of radio communications was taken. The area was not buoyed due to the heavy seas nor were diving or salvage operations ever conducted. A/S Rescure Unite 4 alerted all stations & everything possible was done to get flight back safely. At present, passing through a big pool of oil. But FT-28 should have known if he was actually over the Keys; he had flown in that area for six months while stationed at Miami. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. His plan was to dispatch the Lauderdale ready plane, guarding 4805 kc, on a course 075 degrees to try to contact FT-28. These aircraft are very similar to the TBM Avengers of Flight 19, though the latter did not have radar systems on the wing, as shown in this photograph. According to the senior instructor's later testimony, ". While they may have hoped to survive and stay together until being rescued, the heavy seas and bad weather undoubtedly swamped their life rafts. 372 (1889) Order for Official Communications, General Order No. After a few minutes, the Flight Leader affirmed that he could not be sure where they were. 73 (1866) Resolution of Thanks from Congress to Admiral Farragut for Mobile Bay Action, General Order No. Several PBYs and other multi-engined search planes were dispatched to try to make visual contact. At 2:10 p.m. on December 5, 1945, five TBM Avenger torpedo bombers took off from a Naval Air Station in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Naval Academy, The Catastrophic Fire On Board USS Forrestal, The Sullivan Brothers and the Assignment of Family Members, The African American Experience in the U.S. Navy, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the U.S. Navy, Contributions of American Indians to the U.S. Navy, Naval Service of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Personnel, The World Cruise of the Great White Fleet, Navy Underwater Archaeology Return Program, Research Permits for Sunken & Terrestrial Military Craft, Scanning, Copyright & Citation Information, Obtain Duplications of Records and Photos. What followed is essentially what has been reported by so many others: five days of fruitless searching which revealed numerous older wrecks but not so much as a scrap of wreckage from either the TBMs or the PBM. "Repeat: Cannot see land." Save for one plane that only carried two men, each of the Avengers was crewed by three Navy men or Marines, most of whom had logged around 300 hours in the air. ENGINES RECOMMENDATIONS: Added emphasis is being placed on GEN NATURE E-2 importance of proper navigation & lost plane procedure SPEC TYPE ACC (6) Lost - fuel exhaustion CO: Concur with report of board. “the photographs were examined by experts and judged to be genuine, so I am convinced the ‘mystery’ of Flight 19 is solved”… that seems convenient and quick. Why? Stopped, circled area using searchlights, looking for survivors. 129 (1903) Surplus Provisions, General Order No. ", Colloquium on Contemporary History 1989-1998, DANFS - Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, Needs and Opportunities in the Modern History of the U.S. Navy, Permitting Policy and Resource Management, "Ex Scientia Tridens": The U.S. Both are enduring “mysteries”, but logic points to all of them at the bottom of the ocean. If these directions had been heard or carried out we are certain this flight would have returned to base safely. But some have been.

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99 (1869) Authority Given to Fleet Officers, General Order No. Yet was it a mystery or instead just another example of what pilots call the “error chain”, a series of small errors that lead inexorably to a final crash? Once again, contact was lost for around 20 minutes. 16], Ships named for Individual Sailors - Citations, Ships Sunk and Damaged in Action during the Korean Conflict, A Short Account of the Several General Duties of Officers, of Ships of War: From an Admiral, Down to the Most Inferior Officer, Signals for the Use of the Navy of the Confederate States, Sinking of C.S.S. Incredibly, despite achieving a reasonable radio fix, somehow that information was not relayed to Flight 19. TBM-1C 46325 USED Results negative. The actual final radio transmission was a faint, garbled message. 4 h 55 m UNKNOWN - UNKNOWN PREVIOUS ACCIDENT RECORD INJURIES TO PILOT Pilot was member of scheduled, routine, day navigation MISSING A flight which took off from NAS FT LAUDERDALE FL NAME AND RANK OF OTHER PERSONNEL INJ 5 DEC 1945 at 1408. Flight 19s disappearance has been blamed on UFOs. One of the SAR aircraft reported the weather after the flight:  “…the ceiling was approximately 800 to 1200 feet overcast, occasional showers, estimated wind, west southwest about 25 30 knots. At this point FT-74's transmitter went out and he had no power to continue on the common frequency with the lost Avengers. In any case, the Bahamas and the Keys look a lot alike from the air and most likely he was somewhere near Great Sale Cay, which was on his intended course — i.e., nowhere near the Florida Keys. FT-28 replied that he did not. After that, apparently the pilots undergoing training made a navigational error. Flight 19s Lead-Plane was serial number 73209. The crew and plane of "Flight 19." Landing Craft From Troy to Tokio, Skunks, Bogies, Silent Hounds, and the Flying Fish, Slapton Sands: The Cover-up That Never Was, Smith, Melancton Rear Admiral USN A Memoir, Smoker Sat., July 27, 1918 U.S.S. At 1410 on 5 December 1945, five TBM Avengers comprising Flight 19 rose into the sunny sky above NAS Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

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