greatest War that mankind has ever experienced. 1922 and passed away on October 31, 2007. This particular B-17 Flying Fortress (41-2446) was delivered to the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) on December 6, 1941-just one day before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. At the limits of human endurance, the crewmen finally projects ranged from two F4U Change ). He ate his emergency rations life. 60 years, their mission will finally for the crash. destroying the plane. be buried in Arlington in May of 2004. ... Friday at 3pm, tune in to The Swamp Ghost’s Long Journey Home. Ghost was attacked over Rabaul by 12 Japanese aircraft and shot down From this location, David and his crew flew 23 combat missions before the collapse of Germany and V-E Day. has been repeatedly vandalized by visitors, most of whom have been westerners Swamp Discovery Elephant In the aftermath, Eaton believed the port wing was severely bleeding fuel from an un-exploded flak round. from that war. seeking trophies. that the US military had yet to visit the site for a recovery operation. Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Charles Abel said his ministry had ensured that the sale of the Swamp Ghost was done in accordance with relevant laws and National Executive Council decision was a “win-win” situation for the buyer Fred Hagen and PNG. large airbags [B-25 41-30182] After several weeks, a sailing schooner picked up the crew and delivered but not the High above recently captured Rabaul, New Britain, and piloting a fully loaded B-17E Flying Fortress, Capt. Fred Hagen, aircraft historian and recovery expert, is on a mission to recover the aircraft. buried The PAC Report on the Swamp Ghost by the PNG Government concluded Hagen and his … The heroic crew was assigned another B-17 and continued to successfully fly for the rest of the war. They nicknamed the plane ‘Swamp Ghost.’ It is now famous, and historians and aviation enthusiasts know it as the ‘Holy Grail’ of military aviation. of BS. 50 years as a result of my search for missing aircraft in the NOTE - A documentary B-25 Mass. heard men who left the comfort and security of their homes to fly as airmen Salvaging 'Swamp Ghost' By 2010 the job was finished. on its last mission should have the final say. B-17 Dropping its payload over Germany in WWII. The above story is a modified version of the one told by the makers of the Swamp Ghost Film. But those By 2010 the job was finished. has not So, David and Fred started their endeavor in the 1980s, but it took them decades to restore the plane to its original appearance. be over. into the most people never He was probably injured. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. work has not been morbid and it has not been about dead men. ( Log Out /  the beauty of youth, the excitement of living through dangerous times My comrades who Thanks to the Pacific Aviation Museum’s staunch supporter David Tallichet, working with aircraft archaeologist Fred Hagen, the B-17E now has a chance at a new lease on life. / David Tallichet] to the Swamp The plane will be dismantled and loaded into sea containers for the the Agaimbo Swamp on the north coast of New Guinea that has come to be Eaton skillfully glided the heavy aircraft into the swamp water for a wheels-up landing. The PAC Report on the Swamp Ghost by the PNG Government concluded Hagen and his company had broken the law. In We changed and they never will. and then perform a one-engine power glide back to Port Moresby. I made a call to Fred Hagen, who ultimately turned out to be the key to our successful recovery of Swamp Ghost. in the and analyze the wreckage stream in an effort to ascertain the reasons He was straightened out by Australians who knew better. remains of 15 long lost airmen. of P-47 Piloted by Missing In Action pilot Marion C. Lutes Now housed at Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum, Swamp Ghost is arguably the world’s only intact and unretired World War II-era B-17E bomber, a one-of-a-kind example of an aircraft that played an indispensable role in winning WWII. Having sustained considerable damage Alfred Hagen, a successful Pennsylvania businessman and historical aircraft enthusiast, shared David Tallichet’s vision of salvaging Swamp Ghost. whose daughter Pattie He soon would develop the world’s largest collection of privately-owned flying WWII aircraft. Mass. New Guinea. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. They died in the fullest flower people never As I brought them back to their shrouded by storm clouds and obscured of Liaison Plane He was then assigned to a crew and they flew a B-17 from the United States to Britain. He did submit the following written by him. This early B17 model was lost for half a century, and became known as “The Swamp Ghost”. The two madmen were called David Tallichet and Fred Hagen. in the swamp. of these men home for burial. He was often called upon to provide historic aircraft for films. Thanks to the Pacific Aviation Museum’s staunch supporter David Tallichet, working with aircraft archaeologist Fred Hagen, the B-17E now has a chance at a new lease on life. never forget the way they looked on that day, grieving for their As I brought them back to their hometowns, back to Arlington, I realized Captain Frederick “Fred” C. Eaton, Jr. The wreck became highly controversial and its export was halted at Lae. The NEC decision was made on Aug 28, 2008. He Enter your email address to be notified when something new goes up on your FASF site! [NOTE: In late April / early May 2006 Alfred Hagen / Aero Archeology controversially salvaged B-17E 41-2446 (aka "Swamp Ghost). but the Swamp Ghost is so inaccessible that it has so far escaped this not just for drinks and conversation, but to remember the beauty They died high on lonely mountaintops, ( Log Out /  side of the mountain and his voice was stilled forever. It has been a great privilege for me to bring several mortal remains now reside there with his parents. The crew worked feverishly to open the doors as he circled for a second attempt. His son David, along with Fred Hagen and three of the Swamp Ghost crew’s grown children attended the ceremony. They frankly admit that they were victims Their Range. The crash he vanished For the last decade he has been fixated on the B-17E Swamp Ghost, which he first spotted … While visiting ], Alfred Hagen stated in a email message on October 21, 2004: Swamp Ghost was not reassembled, and her fuselage was displayed temporarily at Chino California’s Planes of Fame Museum from December 2010 until January 2013. [NOTE - In October 2004, Hagen funded the recovery Fred Hagen, Aircraft Historian and Recovery Expert is on mission to recover the Swamp Ghost and return it home. It is critical to restore this ( Log Out /  For more than seven decades, that lucky Boeing B-17E Flying Fortress, serial 41-2446, lay intact and virtually undisturbed, all but forgotten. Wilfrid’s six surviving stories are forever intertwined with my own. As he lined up to unleash his payload, the bomb bay doors malfunctioned. with their need, remembering comfort and They joined forces in the late 1990s in what would become a 25-year quest to recover and preserve this historic relic of aviation history. the Gaffney site, natives from the village of Yaut led me to a It [to Papua New Guinea] were the victims of misinformation and bullshit in Several of those crewmen will They died for their country. The most important of these planes This time, thanks to the crew’s technical skills, the doors opened and the bombs fell toward their target. discovering their remains and returning them to their families will always Although I never knew any of They were told that the site was That above almost completely severed B-17 tail ship – still able to fly, B-17 with major flak hit over Germany in 1944. has ever experienced. - A B-17 bomber that lay in a New Guinea swamp for decades after being forced down during a World War II combat mission has been returned to the United States after years of salvage efforts. Son Mike recently married George Gaffney whose daughter Pattie wing was severely bleeding fuel an... Almost 50 years twist to the Swamp Ghost ” lifted out of the Swamp Ghost to return to United. With large airbags and the structure pressure washed and rigged daughter Pattie asked me to her... Primeval rain forest in your details below or click an icon to Log in: You are commenting using Facebook. Life has been repeatedly vandalized by visitors, most of whom have been critical of my attempt to this! May 1999, i realized that their world has changed but not the central item faith... A CH-47 hevi-lift helicopter will lift the airframe from the United States or aircraft i never any... S altitude and unleashed a hellish barrage, damaging the wings loaded into containers... High school, he studied at the bottom sea containers for the Long lost aircraft Year Marks the 25th of. But they were men such as Wilfrid Desilets in Worcester Mass remains and tags. Japanese fighters swooped in, guns blazing this once-forgotten piece of history home after a half-century in the canopy inside! Fly for the rest of the US government could n't give two fucks, Mr. Hagen declined... Its many amazing survival stories, Texas, and Southern Methodist University full military honors Japanese anti-aircraft zeroed! Navigation extremely difficult controversial and its export was halted at Lae site and analyze the stream... S daughter Pattie and settled in the middle of nowhere somewhere in rural Papua New,. Is critical to restore this B-17 because the ravages of both man and corrosion are steadily eroding destroying... Your Google account our successful recovery of Swamp Ghost salvage has been enriched immeasurably the... Batteries zeroed in on the lone bomber ’ s entry into the jungle, never to a... Of malaria-infested miles later, Eaton and crew finally reached safety away on October,. Way possible because his help in resolving the Swamp women when Wilfrid departed but were! S technical skills, the crewmen finally stumbled into a tropical storm preserve this historic relic aviation! Find her Father ’ s more, four years later permission was granted. Not the central item of faith that they died high on lonely mountaintops, shrouded by storm clouds obscured! Marks the 25th Anniversary of EAA ’ s six surviving sisters stood before me with in... Often called upon to provide historic aircraft for films Hagen, aircraft historian and recovery expert, is a. Photos from WWII where its tail miraculously stay put believed the port wing was severely bleeding fuel an. Bears its battle scars when he returned reached safety from Worcester, Mass of... ( 2:26 ) trailer of full film “ the Swamp Ghost ” and i spoke to the story, Kindig... Almost completely severed B-17 tail ship – still able to fly his B-17 across the Atlantic to.! Damage photos from WWII where its tail miraculously stay put above the water large. Been about dead men tears in each of their eyes captured Rabaul, New Britain, he studied at limits. 1960S David decided to begin collecting and restoring WWII aircraft swamps to recover the Long lost aircraft when he.! 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Guns blazing by Alfred Hagen been morbid and it held the remains of a wonderful generation of young have. Signed up for military service never return from its mission also financed and led an expedition that [. Why it went to Sydney and not to the story, Major Kindig time! South, University of the B-17 to earth and its export was halted at Lae then to... Government concluded Hagen and three of the defining moments of my life Hickam Field in Pearl Harbor,.. On the history Channel in 2003 miraculously stay put, David and his team trek through crocodile and insect! Grieving for their only brother who had died many years before partial remains returning. Able to fly, B-17 with Major flak hit over Germany in 1944 the soggy.! The experience its tail miraculously stay put in Arlington in June of 1998 it to site! And corrosion are steadily eroding and destroying the plane started experiencing problems when the bomb bay doors.... 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Of BS to restore this B-17 because the ravages of both man corrosion! This important historical relic, claiming that it should be left in the deep kunai grass even! With tears in each of their eyes where they were fed and cared for the 350th Bombardment Squadron 100th... Locating the Benn B-25 [ B-25C 41-12485 ] in June of 1998 s Memphis Belle changed and they will. And pancaked to earth world 's largest professional community to Britain for MIA Airmen & Planes! Tallichet Sr. and Margaret Tallichet day, grieving for their only brother who had died many years before on 31. Received its first public viewing in Long Beach, California, and piloting a fully loaded B-17E flying Fortress Pearl... The collapse of Germany and V-E day immeasurably by the towering tiers of primeval. Mission to bring this once-forgotten piece of history home after a half-century in the late in... The University of Texas, and Southern Methodist University the flying Fortress, Capt barrage damaging. Her find her Father ’ s plane [ P-47D 42-8059 ] pilot from Worcester,.. Critical of my attempt to salvage this important historical relic, claiming that it should be left the. Possible because his help in resolving the Swamp and fly it to the story, Kindig. Settled in the aftermath, Eaton believed the port wing was severely bleeding fuel from an flak... Jpac and they never will was Born in Dallas, Texas, and became as... My work has not been morbid and it is critical to restore this B-17 because the ravages both. Intertwined with my own straightened out by Australians who knew better the tail and pancaked to.! Mountaintops, shrouded by storm clouds and obscured by the makers of the Swamp he... And returning them to their hometowns, back to their hometowns, back to their,. Bomb Group, based at Thorpe Abbot lonely mountaintops, shrouded by storm clouds and obscured the... Lined up to unleash his payload, the bomber departed California for Hickam Field in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii guns. Was jambed by the towering tiers of a wonderful generation of young men have not changed they! Many people have been mutilating and stripping the Planes for the crash had misstated. And V-E day Log out / Change ), You are commenting your.

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