The Search For Amelia Earhart Never Ends…

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47011937

A pair of expeditions is headed for the Pacific in the coming months to try and finally discover what happened to Amelia Earhart.

One is headed by our friends who think she traveled hundreds of miles beyond her probable fuel reserves and crashed on a remote island. The others are coming to search a stretch of the ocean where most experts think she crashed.
The ocean searchers have, I believe, probability on their side; she said she was convinced she was near Howland Island, the land station said her signals proved she was right there, and she said she was out of fuel. Case closed?

No, the island searchers think she traveled more than 200 miles after radio contact eased and made it to what was then Gardner’s Island. Their evidence: Pretty sketchy so far. Now they think they have located a sonar image of a landing gear in the area. If they are right, they know somebody’s plane crashed there. But sonar images that remind people of something are plentiful – they have popped up several times in the search for the Loch Ness Monster. People often look at an image of a sonar reading and see something other than what is there. Of course that is why they are headed back.

This is truly needle in a haystack stuff. The Electra she flew is a pretty small plane, the Pacific is vast. The sea searchers are looking at an area many square miles in size. The area around the island isn’t small either.  Almost everything else I can think of that has been found intentionally dwarfs the Electra or was found in shallower  water. I wish them both good luck and am a very interested observer. As usual I have Crow On Ice in case the island searchers find her plane against my every expectation.

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2 Responses to The Search For Amelia Earhart Never Ends…

  1. Tom Burney says:

    I’m puzzled by the perennial appeal of finding Amelia Earhart’s plane (or her) after 70+ years. These latest attempts are futile. The sonar “findings” of a landing gear as evidence are a stretch at best. Are there Patrons willing to underwrite such adventures? A mini-industry? The South Pacific has literally thousands of tons of aircraft and ship parts hidden under its waves. Scores of planes have vanished over the years. It must be the appeal of Amelia herself, the icon of the independent woman, decades ahead of her time. I’m open to explanations since I’m obviously confused…

    • It is a puzzle, isn’t it, Tom? This is what I think it involves. Part of it is fascination with testing technology. These boys and girls are playing with cool toys. There is also simple curiosity. Much of it is her charisma, which apparently was pretty great. Another big part of it is that it is simply something people have talked about forever and each generation somewhere, somehow hears of it. Her disappearance entered the public consciousness and stayed there. People still make movies about her and her disappearance. People do love a mystery and the fact that no one saw the plane splash down adds her name to the list of missing people which includes Glenn Miller D.B. Cooper and Michael Rockefeller. What happened? Why? Then there is that mystery world of alternative history and conspiracy theory where the explanations given for anything just aren’t good enough and a “better” answer is sought. I suppose it is related to the impetus that keeps legions of law enforcment oficers looking for clues in cold cases – and keeps us watching television series and documentaries about cold cases.

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