|Pilot Lt(jg) Cark Burkhardt, 202024 (KIA, BR) CO
Crashed March 8, 1944
Built by Consolidated at San Diego. Constructors Number 1621. Delivered to the U. S. Navy (USN) as PBY-5A Catalina bureau number 48259. Assigned to Fleet Air Wing 1 (FAW-1) to Patrol Squadron 12 (VP-12). No known nickname or nose art.
On March 8, 1944 took off from Ondonga Airfield on New Georiga piloted by Lt(jg) Cark Burkhardt on a night anti-submarine patrol mission to the east of Bougainville. Returning in bad weather, this Catalina impacted into mountain on Choiseul
Recovery of Remains
After the crash, natives located the crash site and buried the bodies of the crew. Later, the remains were recovered and transported to the United States for permanent burial.
The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. After the recovery of remains, Burkhardt was buried during 1949 at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Wheat Ridge, CO at plot 21-11-0-680.
Navy Serial Number Search Results - PBY-5A Catalina 48259
"48259 (VP-12) hit mountain on Choiseul Island in the Solomons 3/8/1944. 9 killed."
FindAGrave - LTJG Carl Burkhardt (grave photo)
VP-12 War Diary March 1944 - page 1-2
"8 March 1944 - one plane crashed into a mountain on the west coast of enemy
held Choiseul Island while returning in bad weather at night from an anti-submarine search east of Bougainville. All nine officers and men in the crew were killed. The bodies were found by friendly natives and were buried on the island."
Thanks to Jim Sawruk for additional information
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June 29, 2019