Missing - C-47A Serial Number A65-56 Tail Number VH-CIJ

Discussion about wrecks and losses as well as historic sites in the Pacific.

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Missing - C-47A Serial Number A65-56 Tail Number VH-CIJ

Post by preedman »


I am related to F/O William Patrick Reedman, RAAF 435578 (MIA) who was on this plane in 1945 - http://www.pacificwrecks.com/aircraft/c-47/A65-56.html

My father ( now deceased ) was William's younger brother.

I noticed that a SMH article in 2008 suggested a search was being considered -http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/search ... 62788.html

I am wondering if this search was conducted and if so, did it find any signs of the plane.?


Paul Reedman
Last edited by Daniel Leahy on Mon Oct 07, 2013 5:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Added correct VH number.

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Re: Missing - C-47A-30-DK Serial Number A65-56 Tail Number

Post by GordyB2 »

Hi Paul
The DAT Rego was VH-CIJ

I haven't anymore either in new news, but past:

Full history:

A65-56 VH-CIJ C-47A-30-DK c/n25365 43-48104 Ex 43-48104 ordered under Aus 52 Div#1002 Contract 40652 (2 of 4 July 44). Rec 3AD ex USA 05/08/44. DAT Call sign VHCIJ 08/08/44. Rec 38 Sqn RAAF ex 3AD 17/08/44. Rec 33Sqn RAAF ex 38Sqn RAAF to replaced A65-60 01/01/45. Accident 1015hrs 11/09/45 when aircraft on courier run to Dobodura PNG ex Lae/Moresby and Milne Bay, due to extreme bad weather, crashed into sea in the South West Corner of Milne Bay PNG in around 40-50 feet of water. Crew: F/Lt E C Beer Serv#253615, F/Lt J F Mulchy Serv#403946, Sgt F X Sullivan Serv#449405 and 8 Passengers*. AMSE Write-off per File#9/16/2917 10/10/45. TTHRs 1911.55Hrs. R1830-92 Engs #359379 and 359391. * List was in error as there were more on board. 15 Passengers: Spr K Smith VX65318, Cpl Moran 118118, Sgt Doran 50353, F/O Reedman 435570, F/Sgt Rutherford 433345, F/O Gordon 419569, Lt Williams QX46491, LAC Stevens 418569, Liddle RAN, Cpl Bastall 88705, LAC Walton 151902, LAC Healey 162787, Sgt Devenish 17286, LAC Haslan 159583 and Cpl Mackay 139076.



Daniel Leahy
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Re: Missing - C-47A Serial A65-56 Tail Number VH-CIJ

Post by Daniel Leahy »

Hi Paul,

The Pacific Wrecks profile for this aircraft has been updated since your original post, and now includes the following information:
During late 2011, Rod Pearce of MV Barbarian II with Norwegian diver Kasper Sommer and Danish diver Roy Torgerson found aircraft wreckage believed to be this aircraft off on the southwest corner of Milne Bay, between Gumini River and Gamadoda underwater at roughly 20-30m depth in murky water.

The wreckage includes the wings, engines, undercarriage and tail section. The divers recovered one of the propellers, tail wheel tire, cockpit control quadrant and cables. No remains were observed during the initial dives, nor a positive identification of the aircraft from a dataplate or serial number stencil.

During early 2012, the aircraft was reported by Rod Pearce to the RAAF Searcher Team at Canberra as a potential MIA site.
A Facebook group titled 'The Found Dakota: VH-CIJ' has also been set up at the URL below:


Daniel Leahy
Canberra, Australia


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