Monday, November 18, 2013

Missing Marines Laid to Rest-- Part 2

Their plane was designated bureau number 06969, a line of planes that sank many Japanese vessels during the war. The crash occurred on a coral cliff less than two miles from the runway. A rescue party found its burnt wreckage and collected what they could of Captain White and S.Sgt. Meek, burying the remains in a nearby ravine, according to a 2012 report on the crash.

Four years later, after the war, a group of the Army's 604th Quartermaster Graves Company went to Mavea Island to investigate the crash, and also that of 2nd Lt. Bernard Jensen, whose aircraft had no identifying bureau number. They met two islanders known as Willy and Billy and "...Billy led the search party to an area of thick jungle and described what he saw there on the day of [Jensen's] crash. He explained to the [soldiers] that he and the Marine search party found only the pilot's body approximately 100 feet from the airplane. 

After a search of the crash site for any remaining evidence, the search team left Mavea Island without finding the BuNu 06969 crash site."

If At First You Don't Succeed.... More to Come Tomorrow. --GreGen

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