Atlantic Ocean – November 8, 1961

Atlantic Ocean – November 8, 1961


P2V Neptune
Quonset Air Museum

      At 8 p.m. on the night of  November 7, 1961, a U. S. Navy P2V Neptune bomber with eleven men aboard took off from the Brunswick Naval Air Station to take part in anti-submarine exercises with the air craft carrier U.S.S. Lake Champlain 100 miles off the coast of Virginia.  The aircraft carried fourteen hours worth of fuel for the long range flight. 

     At 2:40 a.m. on the morning of the 8th, the Neptune was cleared to return to Brunswick and a short time later all contact with the aircraft was lost.  A search was begun, and hours later, two bodies, two life rafts, and pieces of wreckage were recovered and brought aboard the Lake Champlain.  There were no survivors. 

     The crew were identified as:

     Pilot: Lieutenant Commander Phillip S. Callihan, 36, of Memphis, Tenn. 

     Lieutenant (j.g.) Robert J. Miller, 23, of New Hyde Park, New York.

     Lieutenant (j.g.), William G. McLane, 22, of Lake Placid, New York.

     Lieutenant (j.g.) Edmund J. McGrath, 24, of Chicago, Ill.

     AMH1 Harold G. Kirkman, 27, of Kernersville, North Carolina.

     PO 3/C Paul Harden, 23, of Philadelphia, Penn.  

     PO 1/C Gerald J. Dinan, 25, of Zanesville, Ohio. 

     PO 2/C Wayne J. Stevens, 30, of Adairsville, Georgia. 

     Airman Paul E. Lare, 26, of Convoy, Ohio.

     Po 3/C John J. Walsh, 22, of Ellsworth, Maine.

     AO 2/C Roy D. Smith, 23, of Crofton, Kentucky.

     The cause of the accident is unknown. 


     The Evening Star, (Washington, D. C.), “11 Die As Navy Plane Crashes Off Virginia”, November 9, 1961, page A-22.



Brunswick, ME. – January 28, 1944

Brunswick, ME. – January 28, 1944


U.S. Navy SBD Dauntless
U.S. Navy Photo.

     On January 28, 1944, a flight of three Douglas SBD Dauntless aircraft were returning to the Brunswick Naval Air Station after a formation training flight.  As the aircraft approached the field at an altitude of 1,800 feet in a “V” formation, one of the aircraft, (Bu. No. 28727), left the formation and went into a spin from which it did not recover.  The aircraft crashed and burned killing the pilot, Ensign James A. Andrew, Jr., and the gunner, Seaman 1/c Harry Hoerr. 

     The men were assigned to VS-31.


     U. S. Navy accident report #44-11278, dated January 28, 1944.  

Brunswick, ME. – July 19, 1946

Brunswick, Maine – July 19, 1946 


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

     On July 19, 1946, a flight of F6F-5 Hellcats left Quonset Point Naval Air Station in Rhode Island for a training flight to Brunswick Naval Air Station in Maine.  Upon reaching Brunswick, the aircraft began to land.  One Hellcat, (Bu. No. 72606), was making a normal landing when the aircraft was caught in a downdraft and forced into an unpaved area 30 feet short of the runway.  Upon touchdown, the left landing gear was torn away.   The aircraft then bounced up and became airborne as the pilot applied throttle.  He was notified by the tower at Brunswick that a portion of the landing gear was missing, and was advised to return to Quonset Point.  Upon his return to Quonset, he made a wheels up landing on the grassy strip alongside the runway.  The aircraft suffered heavy damage, but the pilot was not injured.

     The aircraft was assigned to VF-82.   


     U. S. Navy accident report dated July 19, 1946


Atlantic Ocean – March 15, 1973

Atlantic Ocean – March 15, 1973    

P3-A Orion
U. S. Navy Photo

     On March 15, 1973, a U.S. Navy Lockheed P-3 Orion with five men aboard left Brunswick Naval Air Station for a routine training flight over the Atlantic Ocean.  While on the flight, the aircraft crashed into the sea about 40 miles south of the air station due to an unknown cause.  Coast Guard and Navy aircraft sent to search for the missing plane reported debris floating on the surface, but no sign of survivors. 

     The aircraft was assigned to Patrol Squadron 10, (VP-10), based at Brunswick.  

     There is a bronze plaque honoring the memory of the crew at the Brunswick Naval Museum at the former Brunswick Naval Air station.

     Those aboard the aircraft were identified as:

     Lt. Cmdr. John E. Boyer of Lewistown, Penn. 

     Lt. Grover R. Caloway, age 28, of McGhee, Ark.  

     Chief Aviation Machinist Mate Jeremiah K. Sullivan, Jr., of York, Penn.

     Machinist 1st Class Wayne C. Clendonning, of Vanceboro, Maine.

     AW2 Reginald Lee Walker, of Bristol, Ind.   To see a photo of AW2 Reginald Walker go to, memorial# 147983699.


     Providence Journal, “5 Are Believed dead In Crash Of Navy Plane”, March 16, 1973, page 22.

     Providence Evening Bulletin, “Navy Hunts 5 Lost In Sea Crash”, March 16, 1973, page 8.

     Providence Sunday Journal, “Navy Ends Search”, March 18, 1973, page B-7

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