Swamp Ghost will not be restored

Source - The National

Swamp Ghost, the B17E Flying Fortress that lay in a near perfect state at Agiambo Swamp in Oro province for more than 60 years, will not be restored and flown at airshows as promised by the aviation enthusiast who salvaged it.

American construction businessman, Fred Hagen, now wants to display it at the Pime Air and Space museum in Tucson, Arizona one of the largest air museums in the world.

A news article in the Fly Past, an aviation magazine in the United Kingdom said the Swamp Ghost was last month aboard a ship in New Zealand, on its final leg of the journey to Los Angeles and then to Tucson, Arizona, the United States.

Initial plans indicate that the Swamp Ghost will be exhibited in as "as found" diorama, with the emphasis on conservation rather than restoration.

Pacific WW11 wrecks enthusiast Justin Taylan said yesterday;"This article is interesting, because it states the plane will go to Pima Air and Space Museum, yet no information is on their website."

"These points are different than the statements made in a prior March 6 article in the Philly News that said he would restore it to fly in airshows".

The B17E Flying Fortress had become known as Swamp Ghost when it was returning from a raid on Japanese targets in Rabaul on February 23 1942.

It suffered engine failure and landed in the Agiambo swamp, about 123 kilometers inland from the coastal village of Banderoda, Oro Bay.

Its captain Fred Eaton and crew walked to safety.

Since 1977, Hagen had tried to salvage it. When he finally did it in May 2006, he was forced to wait for another 3 years as the aircraft, which had been stripped into parts, lay in a yard at Voco Point in Lae, having been impounded by the government.

Hagen arrived in Lae in February this year to ship it out.


Anonymous said...

What becomes of the war relic and the people of Oro? I believe a part of history has been erased from their lives. Come to think of it, the feeling is SAD.


Euralia Paine said...

Yes...I know how you feel. It is a sense of loss of something we grew up. I grew up seeing such relics around and over the years, nature has taken its toll disintegrating many of them into dust, swamp mud or whatever. As children we were reminded that where the relic (s) lay was a graveyard where men had died fighting.
Obviously for a cause we really didn't understand; and never will.



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