Off Scituate, MA – August 28, 1934

Off Scituate Massachusetts – August 28, 1934 

     Updated January 16, 2021

     At 7: 30 a.m. on the morning of August 28, 1934, First Lieutenant Maurice J. Connell, of the U.S. Army Reserve, left Marston Mills Airport in Barnstable flying an O1-E army bi-plane.  He was headed for Boston where he was to take on a photographer for an aerial photo mission.  As he neared the city he encountered heavy fog conditions and found himself over the town of Scituate which is to the south of Boston.  He tried to land three times: once on a golf course, again on a plowed field, and a third time on a sand bar, but for reasons not stated in the press, was unsuccessful. 

     After his third attempt his plane made a loud noise as if an explosion had occurred, although it could have been the engine backfiring.  The sound was heard by navy personnel stationed at the Fourth Cliff radio station, and immediately afterwards the roar of the plane’s motor stopped.  At the time Connell’s aircraft was over the water off Scituate, about 200 yards off shore. 

     The Coast Guard was notified and a search was begun.   Wreckage of the aircraft, along with the pilot’s log book were recovered, however, Lt. Connell’s body was not.      

     1st Lt. Connell was highly regarded by his peers.  He graduated from the School of Aeronautics at Princeton University on July 13, 1918, and from the Army Primary School at Souther Field, Americus, Georgia, November 6, 1918.  He served in World War I and was honorably discharged in 1919.  He later joined the Reserve Corps, and had a total of 15 years service in the Army Air Corps and Reserve.   


New York Times, “Flier Falls In Sea Off Scituate In Fog”, August 29, 1934

Return to Top ▲Return to Top ▲