Charlestown, R. I. – April 22, 1946

Charlestown, Rhode Island – April 22, 1946


SB2C Helldiver
U.S. Navy Photo

     On the evening of April 22, 1946, a flight of six navy SB2C Helldiver aircraft were returning to the Charlestown Naval Auxiliary Air Field after a training flight.  There was considerable fog and haze hanging over the area at the time.

     The flight was in three sections of two planes each.  As the aircraft came over the field at 800 feet, they made a normal breakup in preparation for landing.   After all aircraft were down, it was discovered that one was missing.  That aircraft was, (Bu. No. 83625), piloted by Ensign Coy A Stephenson, Jr., (23), accompanied by his gunner, ARM2/c Walter J. Edwards.  A search was instituted, but low visibility made it difficult.  The missing plane was found to have crashed in the water not far off shore, and both men aboard had perished in the accident.

     The men had been assigned to VB-20.

     To see a photo of Ensign Stephenson’s grave click on link below.

     Source:  U. S. Navy accident report dated April 22, 1946.


Return to Top ▲Return to Top ▲