The unexplained mystery of the blimp crew that vanished

Throughout WW2, on August 16, 1942 one of the strangest unexplained mysteries of all time took place when the 2 man team of a United States Navy submarine chaser blimp disappeared in mid flight.

The US Navy blimp L-8 took was set to take off from Treasure Island, San Francisco Bay early in the morning on a mission to look for Japanese submarines in the Pacific.

On board the blimp a 3 male team, Lieutenant Ernest Dewitt Cody, Ensign Charles Ellis Adams and the mechanic assigned to the flight, J Riley Hill, who likewise prepared the L-8 for it’s flight.

As it was about to liftoff, Hill was told that the ship was too heavy and bought to state behind.

The L-8 lastly removed at six a.m, with just 2 of it’s scheduled three male .

The last contact with the blimp came at 7:50 a.m., when it had to do with 5 miles east of the Farralone Island. The team radioed that they were going to investigate an oil slick.

“Standby …” was the last anyone become aware of the team of the L-8 … Witness reports

The L-8 circled around was seen over the area for about an hour by two close-by ships.

The crew of the fishing boat, the Daisy Grey, and a Liberty ship, the Albert Gallatin. Both crews offered statement during the inquest that was to follow …

The L-8 dropped one flare and circled around over he find attempting to use the MAD, Magnetic Anomoly Detector, clearly trying to discover if there was a big metal mass under the oil slick.

The L-8 continued to circle the area, boiling down towards the surface area, the L-8 continued to circle till simply after 9am. At that point, it dropped ballast, and increasing, headed back to towards San Francisco rather of continuing to the Farralone Islands, website of a radio listening post, or heading north to Reyes Point.

See sightings

Having actually not heard back from the crew of the L8 and not able to make contact, Moffett Field sent airplane out to browse for it, along with relaying that all aircraft in the area need to watch for the L8.

A Pan Am flight heading towards San Francisco found the L-8 at 10:20 am, heading towards the Golden Gate Bridge. It was under control …

At about 10:30 am witnesses saw the blimp unexpectedly increase dramaticly at a sharp angle and go extremely high up into the clouds …

About 10:50 am the blimp is spotted along the coast highway. An off duty seafarer driving along the highway, heading for a day at the beach, takes a photo of the L-8. The blimp is partly deflated and the seaman can tell the L-8 is behaving strangely. He and his photogragh would end up in the inquest in the future.

A little later, 2 guys swimming in the water effort to control the blimp, getting at it’s guide ropes as it floatslow over them. The blimp, too huge and being driven by the wind, rolls along the beach, unstoppable. After making it over the dunes and onto the golf course, still venting drags along the turf. The bomb on the right side of the gondola gets removed and drops onto the ground.


Missing crew?

At this moment, the Navy receives a confidential call saying that “a blimp has actually crashed onto the golf course and that they have the recuperated the team.”

As trucks are dispatched from Moffet Field to the golf course for a recovery, a second confidential call comes in saying that “the airman are not aboard the crashed blimp”

A strong gust of wind unexpectedly raises the partly deflated blimp into the air, and sends it on a heading towards Daly City.

The authorities and fire department, who are now following the blimp, chase everything the method till it lastly comes to rest on Belleview Ave in Daly City. The blimp entangled in the power lines diminishing the street.

Rescuers show up rapidly, and find no indication off the crew, they likewise find one of the 2 doors is latched fully open.

Navy personnel arrive on the scene shortly afterwards and find that the engine switch is on with lots of gas in the tanks. The secret code books on-board are intact, the parachutes, raft, weapons undisturbed, and the radio and Bogen Hailer all function.

Navy trucks show up with armed sailors and the blimp is trucked off hours later with guards surrounding the blimp.

The examination

A Navy Board of Examination is formed 2 days later day under Leader Francis Connell.

The board calls witnesses and Navy personal included in the upkeep of the blimp. The board of inquiry probes for a sensible explanation, none is readily available. The engines start and run usually when evaluated. The radio is working usually. In was reported that in the case of an emergency situation, the first thing the crew would do was utilize the radio.

The Bogen Hailer would enable the pilots to send out word to any surface area ships ought to the radio not work. Ought to the engines stop, complimentary ballooning back to land is a choice, dropping weight to change height. Ought to the gas envelope establish a leakage, parachutes are supplied. A raft is on board should the raft land in water.

None of these alternatives were taken.

Theories of the missing team

The statement considers that the crew may have fallen unintentionally through the open door. This they reported though is not possible provided the locking system on the doors.

The call stay inexplicable, and untraced– why would someone claim they have the team, then quickly after state they crew was missing?

How do two males vanish from a blimp over the ocean?

Case unsolved


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