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P-38 20mm crash site recovered


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This is the cover sheet from the mishap report and the only good crash site photo I could find. The other photo is my dad helping me dig it up. At first I thought it was a part of the landing gear. When we came up on the flash suppressor I changed my mind as to what it was.

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This bird hit hard. The impact crater was actually three craters, engine, fuselage and engine. To the left of my dad you can see one of the engine impacts. To the right of my dad is a .50 cal barrel wrapped in a metal shroud. Debris was strewn in a V from impact going out 100 yards. This crash site was developed a few years back and no longer exists.

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Good find! I guess with so many wartime accidents, clean up at the site was minimal, probably just the pilot's body and effects.

This was buried in the ground two feet. Anything that could be cleaned up was at the time. The more remote and difficult to get to the more that remains. Crash sites are brutal and every once in a blue moon personal effects are found.

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Right, it was a quick superficial cleaning and then on to the next one. They weren't going to take the time to dig up every piece. In the 80s, there was a rumored B-24 crash site discovered in the desert west of Tucson that was largely left alone.

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Right, it was a quick superficial cleaning and then on to the next one. They weren't going to take the time to dig up every piece. In the 80s, there was a rumored B-24 crash site discovered in the desert west of Tucson that was largely left alone.

Trey has a web site. He hunts Arizona and finds really good sites. Check it out. www.aircraftarchaeology.com

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Very neat! I remember visiting a KC-135 crash site with my dad West of Phoenix back in the early '80s. We didn't find anything beside small bits.

Bob Davis
Secretary, Arizona Chapter, The Orders and Medals Research Society
ASMIC Member #5364, OVMS Member #11939
US Army Infantry 2001-2009, OIF/OEF Veteran

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Very neat! I remember visiting a KC-135 crash site with my dad West of Phoenix back in the early '80s. We didn't find anything beside small bits.

Crash sites take time to figure out. Some of my best finds were from crash sites we called 2% sites. These were nothing more than a few shards of aluminum and hard metal. I would always revisit a site just to walk around and get a feel for it. The only sites I never found anything at were the X-1, X-15 and X-35. They were picked clean.

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