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VS-48 Dutch Harbor
With the help of my flight log book I can recount an incident that occurred
at Kodiak on Jan 25,1945 as follows:
I was a passenger in a PBY-5A under the command of Patrol Plane Commander
(PPC) Charles J. Hellie inbound to Kodiak from Dutch Harbor (for whatever
reason I don't know - probably a boondoggle of some kind). The weather was
so bad and nearly everybody aboard was air sick. We made 4-5 unsuccessful
attempts to find the runway. Through the skill of our PPC and a great radar
operator we located Lake Chiniak and made an open water landing there - the
PBY-5A was an amphibian, you know. We stayed there overnite and when the
weather cleared the next day we took off for the airstrip. A HARROWING
EXPERIENCE !!!!!!!!!!! which I shall always remember as one of the several
brushes with the grim reaper that I have experienced.
Best regards, Frank Holmes
This photo was supplied by Frank Holmes, FHolmes101 (at) aol.com via Bill Alberts, liveoak (at) linkonline.net.
Left to right front row: Dave Bell, Ens Frank Holmes, Ens Chet Widman, Ens Leon Mathwick. Second row 2nd from left is ADD1 Dobbins, leading PO.