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  Martin M-130 "Philippine Clipper" Registration Number NC14715  
Pan Am

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Pan Am c1941

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Pan Am Dec 9, 1941

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Pan Am December 1941

Aircraft History
Built by Glenn L. Martin at Middle River, Maryland. This aircraft was one of three M-130 flying boats designed for Pan American World Airways (Pan Am) at a price of $417,000.

Nicknamed "Philippine Clipper" with United States registration NC14715. The aircraft had "Pan American World Airways" on the fuselage and the NC14715 on the tail in black. All of the Pan Am flying boats were popularly known as "China Clippers".

On October 9, 1935 this aircraft made her first public flight. On December 9, 1935 made the second trans Pacific flight departing Alameda on a flight across the Pacific and returned.

In September 1936 made the first trans Pacific passenger trip with passengers Juan Trippe and Betty Trippe and a group of newspaper publishers to Hong Kong. Afterwards, began flying regular trans Pacific service.

Wartime History
On December 7, 1941 moored in the lagoon off Wake Island and was delayed on a flight to Guam due to engine repairs that were completed by the end of the day.

On December 8, 1941 took off from the lagoon off Wake Island around 7:00am under the command of Captain John Hamilton on a flight bound for Guam. A few minutes afterwards, this aircraft was recalled by radio using a prearranged code to inform it that the Pacific War had begun and to return the lagoon twenty minutes later. After mooring in the lagoon off Wake Island. Plans were made to use this aircraft to fly a long range patrol escorted by two fighters planned for 1:00pm in search of the Japanese and it was refueled and unloaded.

At noon, Japanese G3M2 Nells bombed Wake Island. During the attack, this aircraft was fully fueled and sustained 26 bullet holes (other sources state 23 holes) but the damage was superficial. A bomb had landed roughly 100' away but did not cause any damage. Ashore, two of the air crew were wounded in this attack.

Afterwards, this aircraft was stripped of extra weight including seats and luxury features to make room for approximately 40 passengers for an emergency evacuation flight for Pan Am employees. After three take off attempts took off at 1:30pm piloted by Captain John Hamilton on a flight via Midway then onward to Pearl Harbor then returned to Treasure Island where the damage sustained at Wake was repaired.

During the Pacific War, this flying boat was pressed into service by the U. S. Navy (USN) manned by her civilian Pan Am crew. Used to transport essential personnel and cargo across the Pacific.

Mission History
On January 20, 1943 took off from Pearl Harbor at 5:30pm under the command of Robert M. Elzey on a flight bound for Treasure Island near San Francisco. Aboard were nineteen crew and passengers including four pilots, three engineers, two radio operators and a steward aboard. Passengers aboard were ten U. S. Navy (USN) personnel including Rear Admiral Robert H. English and three of his staff, Captain Robert Holmes Smith and USN nurse Lt. Edna Morrow who was diagnosed with cancer and was returning home. This flight was Pan Am flight 1104 / trip number 62100. A strong tail wind put the aircraft ahead of schedule and was normal.

On January 21, 1943 in the morning this aircraft encountered bad weather including rain, winds, clouds and fog and flew northward towards San Francisco. At 7:30am while descending, crashed into trees on a mountain side at an altitude of 2,500' and broke up and burned on impact killing everyone aboard. When lost, this aircraft had logged a total of 14,628 hours over eight years of service before the crash.

Crashed at roughly seven miles southwest of Ukiah in Mendocino County, California at Lat 39°04′0″N Long 123°17′0″W. A week after the crash, the wreckage was located and the remains of the crew and passengers were recovered. The Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) File No. 1413-43 concluded the crash was due to pilot error.

Everyone aboard was officially declared dead the day of the crash.
Elzey has an unknown burial presumably in the United States.
Judd is buried at Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland, CA at MM section 5,256, T4.
Aabel is buried at Alta Mesa Memorial Park in Palo Alto, CA at Section D, Subdivision 1, Block A.
Mackota is buried at Cypress Lawn Memorial Park in Colma, CA.
Eagen has an unknown burial presumably in the United States.
Thompson has an unknown burial presumably in the United States.
Angus was cremated and has no burial in the United States.
Hill has an unknown burial presumably in the United States.
English is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5118.
Smith is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5114.
Thomas is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 3, Site 2102-A.
Godwin is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 4, Site 3019-A.
Crane is buried at United States Naval Academy Cemetery in Annapolis, MD.
Black is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5126.
Myers is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5128.
Coll is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5122.
Stone is buried at Arlington National Cemetery at Section 8, Site 5110.
Morrow is buried at Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum in Altadena, CA.

The Hiller Aviation Museum has a memorial plaque dedicated to this aircraft outside the entrance.

Pan Am Historical Foundation: War Boat: The Philippine Clipper (photo)
A Magnificent Fight: Marines in the Battle for Wake Island by Robert J. Cressman
Civil Aeronautics Board, CAB File No. 1413-43
FindAGrave - CPT Robert M Elzey (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - Orvan K Judd (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - Orvan K. Judd, Jr (grave)
FindAGrave - John R Maynard (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - George Harold Aabel (memorial photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - Leo Mackota (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - Clarence P Thompson (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - George W. Angus (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - John G Hill (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - RADM Robert Henry English (photos, grave photo)
FindAGrave - CPT Robert Holmes Smith (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - Capt Robert Ellsworth Thomas (grave photo, memorial photo)
FindAGrave - Capt Donald Clarke Godwin (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - CDR John Jarvis Crane (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - Francis Loudon Black (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - William Girard Myers (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - LCDR John Owen Reilly Coll (photo, grave photo)
FindAGrave - George Roben Stone (grave photo)
FindAGrave - LT Edna O Morrow (memorial photo)
FindAGrave - LTJG Edna Oella Morrow (grave photo)

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Last Updated
October 19, 2018


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