UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA - SAN DIEGO—Two B-25 bombers associated with American servicemen missing in action from World War II were recently documented in the waters off Papua New Guinea by Project Recover--a collaborative team of marine scientists, archaeologists and volunteers who have combined efforts to locate aircraft and associated MIAs from World War II.
The B-25 bomber is one of the most iconic airplanes of World War II, with nearly 10,000 of the famous warbirds conducting a variety of missions—from bombing to photo reconnaissance, to submarine patrols, and the historic raid over Tokyo. Present-day Papua New Guinea was the site of military action in the Pacific from January of 1942 to the end of the war in August 1945, with significant losses of aircraft and servicemen, some of whom have never been found.
Project - Recover - Scientists - Scripps - Institution
Project Recover is comprised of scientists from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego and the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment at the University of Delaware and members of the nonprofit organization BentProp, Limited. In February, a Project Recover team set out on a mission to map the seafloor in search of missing WWII aircraft, conduct an official archaeological survey of a known B-25 underwater wreck, and interview elders in villages in the immediate area.
In its search of nearly 10 square kilometers, Project Recover located the debris field of a B-25 bomber that had been missing for over 70 years, associated with a crew of six MIAs.
People - Image - Airplane - Sea - Floor
"People have this mental image of an airplane resting intact on the sea floor, but the reality is that most planes were often already damaged before crashing, or broke up upon impact. And, after soaking in the sea for decades, they are often unrecognizable to the untrained eye, often covered in corals and other sea-life," said Katy O'Connell,...
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