Lost ‘Libby’ found in Canada

The long-lost remains of a Consolidated B-24 forgotten for 79 years have been found in Newfoundland. Liberator GR Mk.V 589/D was flying with 10 Squadron, RCAF, when it crashed on September 4, 1943.

It is believed the bomber suffered engine failure before it crashed into Gander Lake a few hundred yards from the runway. An abortive recovery at the time located the bomber and attempts were made to retrieve its four occupants. Unfortunately, it was only possible to raise one body before the aircraft shifted into the murky depths. Attempts to relocate it ceased after 12 days.

The crew comprised Wing Commander John Young – who had taken command of 10 Squadron a matter of weeks beforehand – and Squadron Leader John MacKenzie, whose body was retrieved, as well as Flying Officer Victor Bill and Leading Aircraftman Gordon Ward.

On September 5, 2022 589/D was located 165ft below the surface. It had been picked up on multibeam sonar in July 2022, as Kirk Regular of the Shipwreck Preservation Society mapped the lake for the Memorial University’s School of Ocean Technology. Two months later, divers from Canada, the US and France surveyed the Liberator.

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