In Reply to: B-26 "40-1426" wreck posted by Elias Giampuranis on February 20, 2000 at 09:25:55:
Dear Mr. Giampuranis,|
As I understand it, the loss of 40-1426 went
They evidently threw out the "Chinese laundry" encoder before communicating their intention to make an emergency landing at Owi, in the Trobriand Group. Having to use uncoded language, they signalled, but stopped in mid-sentence, realizing that they would be giving their position to the Japanese. Instead, the message that went out said, "Making forced landing where Francine used to live."
Pilot Chris Herron had an excellent reputation for flying ability, but decided to try to preserve the plane by landing with wheels down.
At any rate, the nose wheel got caught on something in the landing, and the plane flipped over, killing both the pilot and co-pilot.
Gurney Field at Milne Bay (Alotau) is named for
The loss records of the 22nd BG rather tenuously attribute the loss of this plane and these men to enemy aircraft.
I believe the pilot and co-pilot were buried beside the plane. The surviving members of the aircrew were rescued and flown to Port Moresby in Catalina A24-18. The wreck appears in Pacific Aircraft Wrecks and Where to Find them by Charles
Post a Followup