Sanford, ME. – March 29, 1968

Sanford, Maine – March 29, 1968

     Around 8 p.m. on the night of March 29, 1968, two men aboard a Lake LA-4 Buccaneer amphibious aircraft took off from Sanford Airport.  Just after takeoff they encountered light misty conditions.  The night was dark with no moon, and it was believed the mist obscured distant reference points.  The aircraft crashed in a thick wooded-brush area a short distance beyond Route 109, but did not burn.  Both men were killed instantly.   


     Sanford Tribune, “Airplane Accident Stuns community – Aerofab Official, Episcopal Priest Killed In Crash”, April 4, 1968, page 1, with photo. 

     Aviation Safety Network


Sanford, ME. – July 24, 1944

Sanford, Maine – July 24, 1944


F6F Hellcat
U.S. Navy Photo

     On the evening of July 24, 1944, an Ensign was sitting in the cockpit of an F6F-3 Hellcat, (Bu. No. 42459), preparing to take part in a scheduled night training flight.  After making several unsuccessful attempts to start the engine, the Plane Captain gave the Ensign a visual signal understood by the pilot and himself to mean “switches off”.   Unfortunately the Ensign failed to see the signal, and looked up just after it had been given, but this was unknown to the Plane Captain who stepped forward and believing the switches were off, began to pull the propeller through.  The engine suddenly fired and the propeller broke the plane captain’s right arm. 


     U. S. Navy accident report dated July 24, 1944.

Sanford, ME. – July 25, 1944

Sandford, Maine – July 25, 1944


F6F Hellcat
U.S. Navy Photo

     On July 25, 1944, several aircraft were taking part in a “carrier landing practice” exercise at the Sanford Naval Auxiliary Air Field.  One aircraft was a F6F-3 Hellcat, (Bu. No. 42759).  As the pilot made his landing on a simulated aircraft carrier deck platform the arresting wire broke causing the plane to swing violently to the right and skid for about 40 feet.  The aircraft required a major overhaul, but the pilot was not injured.  


     U. S. Navy accident report dated July 25, 1944

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