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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 190520
Last updated: 18 September 2021
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Date:05-JUN-1944
Time:c. 1035 L/T
Type:Silhouette image of generic P38 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Lockheed P-38J Lightning
Owner/operator:44th FSqn /18th FGp USAAF
Registration: 43-28570
MSN: Nose no. 500
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Six miles southeast of Kukum Field, Guadalcanal -   Solomon Islands
Phase: Approach
Nature:Military
Departure airport:AAF Kukum Field
Destination airport:AAF Kukum Field
Narrative:
The CO of the 44th Fighter Squadron was leading his unit on a bombing mission against Japanese artillery emplacements on Poporang Island. En-route a recall message was sent from base due to bad weather over the target.
The formation turned around and headed back to Kukum Field, aka Fighter Two. At about this time the RH engine of the CO's P-38 failed and after leading his squadron back, he jettisoned his bombs into the sea and ordered his pilots to land before him. When the airstrip was clear the CO began his landing approach, but for reasons that will probably remain unknown, abandoned the approach and headed away from Kukum Field towards a range of hills nearby.
Shortly after this the pilot of an A-24 called up Kukum Field to report that he had just seen a P-38 "flip over"
and dive into a ravine in the hills.
A search party found the Lightning largely intact and upside down in an area of swamp. There had been no fire. Due to the nature of the crash site the searchers were unable at the time to find the body of the pilot, Major Peyton S. Mathis Jr.

Sources:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/12/30/missing-wwii-fliers-remains-return-from-guadalcanal/21075985/
https://www.pacificwrecks.com/aircraft/p-38/43-28570.html


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
06-Oct-2016 11:39 gerard57 Added
21-Feb-2019 21:00 angels one five Updated [Time, Registration, Cn, Operator, Location, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
21-Feb-2019 21:01 angels one five Updated [Time, Registration, Cn, Operator, Location, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
22-Feb-2019 09:22 angels one five Updated [Time, Registration, Cn, Operator, Location, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
28-Mar-2020 09:35 Xindel XL Updated [Operator, Departure airport, Destination airport, Operator]

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