Looking Inside A Lost Bermuda Triangle Plane
By Dr. Greg Little
Last issue of AP I asked for help to identify the type of aircraft that my wife (Dr. Lora Little) and I found (underwater) while on a May 2011 expedition on the waters of the Great Bahama Bank, which is considered to be the heart of the Bermuda Triangle. Just before the article was issued I had found the actual mechanic who installed the engine who we identified after recovering the serial number off the engine’s information plate, then calling the manufacturer, and then finding the company. The engine was installed in 1970 in Texas. I also received a lot of emails from people who helped in various ways in assisting us to narrow down the possibilities. The mechanic and various others positively identified the plane as a Beechcraft Queen Air. This is a positive and certain ID on the actual plane’s make and model. Unfortunately the company that the mechanic worked for in 1970 no longer does aircraft work and no written records were saved. To compound the problem, the mechanic, now in his late 80’s, recently suffered a moderate stroke. To the delight of his family and me, he immediately recalled that the plane was a Queen Air, but he couldn’t remember any other details.
Two Possibilities—Thanks to Coast-to-Coast AM Listeners
After a few dozen phone calls, emails, and other contacts made from the people I spoke with, we have narrowed down the specific identity of the plane to two possibilities. One of these possibilities is very strong and the other more of a long-shot. The most likely identity of the aircraft is a plane that is on the “semi-official” list of planes lost in the Bermuda Triangle compiled by Gian Quasar, whose website http://www.bermuda-triangle.org is considered to be the most authoritative information source on the subject. After getting information on the “lost” plane, a lot of research led to the family of the long-lost pilot of the plane. I have now spoken to the father of the pilot who disappeared as well as two other family members and had contacts with others who were involved. Not knowing what to expect in the initial contact I was pleased that the plane’s possible discovery was a relief to them. This has turned out to be one of the most interesting and intriguing stories I have ever been involved with. Unfortunately a lot of the maintenance records from the plane were in the plane, so without the planes N-number, we can’t be 100% certain. It is possible that the needed records can still be found before we mount another trip to the site, which is discussed in the next section. Nevertheless this is an interesting and important story and everything points to the plane we found being one on the list of planes that disappeared in the Triangle. However until the final and certain identity of the plane is determined, we’ll wait to release these details and we may first allow the parents of the pilot or the US Coast Guard make an announcement if it turns out to be this plane.
The 2nd Possibility—In the unlikely event that this is NOT the above mentioned plane, then another, perhaps even more baffling and mysterious disappearance has been solved. Oddly, this information came as a complete surprise to us in an email from a Coast-to-Coast listener who found our request on the popular radio show’s website http://coasttocoastam.com. This involves the inexplicable disappearance of a young pilot some decades ago. While this plane is not on the Bermuda Triangle list, oddly we found (online) official requests from law enforcement agencies, which had placed the disappearance in a closed case file that requested further information from the public. We want to thank Coast-to-Coast for posting our request and officially state that we received many helpful emails that aided us at every turn.
U.S. Coast Guard’s Interest & Plans for a Final Resolution
It is still possible that the engine’s serial number we found at the plane can be matched to a specific plane and thereby give a definite identification to the aircraft’s N-number without returning to the actual underwater resting place. But to our surprise, the U.S. Coast has taken an avid interest in the find and the father of the missing pilot, who is a retired Air Force Colonel, has had extensive discussions with them about the case. We are told that as soon as the major boating season ends off Florida’s coast, they will mount an expedition to the site and identify the plane. If it is the Bermuda Triangle plane, then it will probably be recovered from the bottom. If that isn’t done by the Coast Guard, then we will return to the remote site, located over 100 miles south of Bimini and 80 miles west of Andros, and retrieve all cockpit information (serial numbers) from the plane and also search for any belongings. The brief film above shows the plane and the cockpit interior. It is eerie, but in truth, all of the 29 planes we have found thus far are eerie.