Off Aquinnah, MA – February 17, 1945

Off Aquinnah, Massachusetts – February 17, 1945


U.S. Navy F6F Hellcat
U.S. Navy photo

     Aquinnah is a town on the island of Martha’s Vineyard.  Until 1997 it was known as Gay Head. 

     At about 7:35 p.m., on the evening of February 17, 1945, navy pilot Chester Anderson, (Rank not given), was piloting an F6F-5 Hellcat, (Bu. No. 72301), off Aquinnah, Massachusetts, on a night bombing practice training flight.  Anderson and other aircraft in the flight were practicing on a half-submerged wreck off the coast.  Anderson had contacted another aircraft taking part in the exercise just prior to making his “bomb run”.  A short time later he failed to answer his radio.  Nobody had witnessed what happened, but it was presumed he crashed into the water. 

     Source: U.S. Navy Accident Report, dated February 17, 1945

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