The story of this bomber is a sad legacy of a loss on May 5, 1944,
and the violent death of its crew that went MIA. In 1999, the
wreckage was discovered with the human remains undisturbed. CILHI
the US Army's Identification Laboratory was contacted, and the
site was investigated only months earlier. With the help of a
local guide, we located the site after a long walk into a balsa
wood forest and jungle.
The aircraft was hit by a lucky flak burst
in one engine causing catastrophic damage. It impacted at high speed, and the
fuselage and tail broke off and bounced over a nearby ridge where they came to
rest out of sight from the initial impact. There were scattered bits of wreckage
where the plane first impacted.
bomber crashed in the center of a Japanese encampment, and killed or wounded an
unknown number of Japanese. Foxholes and caves from the encampment are still visible.
Cyclone Engine with Tree
This is one of the engines and
is stuck deep in the ground. A tree has grown directly through the center. Rubber
piping and components are in good shape despise the passage of time and trees.
A large pile of debris was grizzly evidence to the
violence of the crash, even 60 years later. Among the twisted bits were buckles
from harnesses, canvas bits, gears and gyros, and .50 cal shell casings and exploded
rounds that had cooked off during the crash.
and Fuselage Impact Area
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