Buzzards Bay, MA. – February 13, 1950

Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts – February 13, 1950


Douglas Skyraider
U. S. Navy Photo

     On the morning of February 13, 1950, a flight of navy AD-3 Skyraider aircraft took off from the Quonset Point Naval Air Station in Rhode Island for a dive-bombing training flight over Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts, in the area of the Elizabeth Islands.  One of the aircraft, (Bu. No. 122849), was piloted by Midshipman Philip Kuehl. 

     At 10:02 a.m., Midshipman Kuehl was making a high-speed dive-bomb run at a surface target when his aircraft inexplicably crashed into the water  and exploded on impact in the area between Gull Island and Nashawena Island. (41-26N, 70-54W) 

     Neither the aircraft or the pilot were recovered.   The exact cause of the accident could not be determined by the naval investigation board.    

Philip Kuehl
High School graduation, 1946
Courtesy of Paul Kuehl.

 Midshipman Kuehl was assigned to VA-34 at Quonset Point NAS. 

     Source: U. S. Navy Accident Report dated February 13, 1950, courtesy of Paul D. Kuehl, nephew of the pilot.   

Buzzard’s Bay – October 31, 1979

Buzzard’s Bay – October 31, 1979

     On October 31, 1979, a 52-year-old man from Marion, Massachusetts, was piloting a Cessna 150 over Buzzard’s Bay at Cape Cod.  At 12:10 p.m., the pilot reported that his aircraft was loosing altitude.  At that time he was at 1,400 feet and about eight miles from shore, and advised he would try make an emergency landing on the beach. 

     Meanwhile the Coast Guard was notified, and the cutter Bibb, along with a rescue helicopter from Otis Air Force Base were dispatched to the area.   

     At 12:25 p.m. all contact with the pilot was lost. 

     Shortly afterwards the helicopter crew spotted the pilot’s body and wreckage of the aircraft floating about one mile south of Smith Neck in Dartmouth, Ma.      


     Providence Evening Bulletin, “Crash Kills Marion Pilot”, November 1, 1979, page B2.

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