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Author Topic: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937  (Read 446904 times)

Gary LaPook

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #195 on: August 18, 2012, 10:52:41 AM »

I've been reading a lot of this speculation for some time and I agree that it is easy to think of things that a castaway should have done to make sure a search plane (if they could have guessed there were planes) or a searching ship would have known they were present.  However, it seems to be that these speculations are founded on an assumption about the possible castaways that is itself a speculation.

Specifically, what should we assume about the physical, emotional and mental state of a castaway in AE's situation (if, in our theory, we assume she was present).  The Niku theory assumes that after an exhausting, lengthy flight in an extremely noisy cabin at high altitude, AE and FN went through the incredibly scary emotional ordeal of being lost in the middle of the Pacific as fuel ran low.  They then (according to this theory) made a "hail Mary" effort to find an Island and happened on Gardner.  They may, or may not, have known what that island was (it didn't match the outline in the charts - if they had them.)

They attempted (according to our theory) an incredibly dangerous landing on a reef at low tide.  We have no way to know how that landing went.  Was it an incredibly rough landing (balloon tires on sharp coral?)  Were they injured?  Was FN still functioning after the landing?

Then our theory assumes that they made at least one and most likely multiple trips between the lagoon and the reef.  We know that the surf - especially on the outside of the reef - was extremely difficult.  The trained and well equipped boat crews that rescued the Norwich City survivors had a very difficult time getting ashore and speculated, at one point, that it would be impossible to do so.  Some of the Norwich crew died getting ashore (in a storm) but all accounts mention a great number of sharks.  Admittedly conditions inside the reef should be far better but seriously folks, we are not talking about Mike Phelps here.  We are talking about exhausted, possibly injured, people swimming to and from a wreck that is partially submerged at high tide in an area frequented by sharks.

Now add what their experiences much have been ashore (again, assuming the theory is correct).  No or very little available water (one of the other parties that explored the island resorted to drinking water that had been puddled in a guano deposit).  Resting - at night or during the day - must have been hellishly difficult because of the predatory crabs.  If FN was still functional then perhaps they could have taken turns but even that would have been difficult for exhausted, possibly injured, people.  They could try to start a fire to protect against crabs but that, in itself, might not be easy for exhausted, possibly injured, people.

So put that all together and what kind of speculative assumptions should you make?  A physically, emotionally and mentally fit AE would have likely left some visible signal.  Would an exhausted, emotionally wrung out, possibly injured and potentially panicked AE have done so?  Could she even have fallen asleep in the shade of a tree following an unsuccessful search for water?

I think the answer is we don't know.  Depending on the assumptions you make, the lack of a signal is very strange or perfectly understandable.  Either way, I don't think you can treat the ABSENCE of a signal as proof against the hypothesis.  It is simply one more factor to be weighed in the balance with ointment jars, lost skeletal remains and sextant boxes.

Anyway, my two cents.  Now I am off to set my DVR to record Sunday night's show.
Many others, in exactly the same circumstances, have managed to overcome all the speculative problems that you have painted and have left marks of their presence. And you left out that they managed to make many trips out to the plane, start the engine, and send radio messages for several days which is a cornerstone of the TIGHAR theory which, if true, shows that they had their wits about them and is evidence that contradicts your dismal picture.

gl
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dave burrell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #196 on: August 18, 2012, 01:40:44 PM »

Gary makes very valid points,they obviously were able for a few days to radio if this theory is true. They had presence of mind to crank an airplane and run a radio. But could not pile some sticks up for a signal bonfire?
They had fuel. Had to run those engines. A few ounces will start a fire. You have wood. There should have been a bonfire on the beach.
A lot just doesn't make sense, but the thing that bothers me most is that dang wrecked ship.
There isn't one of us here who wouldn't have camped right next to it. Built  a bonfire right next to it. It's human nature to not want to leave a structure. It's animal nature as well, fish hang near structures, and not just for food, a wooden post will hold a bass because it gives the fish a safety feeling that is natural and instinctual. Humans have that same instinct.
Plus, they have to know the one thing a ship or plane is going to notice is a giant ship. Supposedy they even say ship on a reef on one transmission. But they are not going to stay near it?
It was noted by both the aviators and the Colorado. And of course it was!
It's a huge ship.
You or me or anyone would have never strayed far from that ship and if alive would have been jumping up and down beside it with every bit of (luggage or supplies) we salvaged from the plane laid out on the beach.
But instead a week later there isn't a trace apparently near that ship.
Of course we don't know if the "recent habitation" may have been their supplies or the NC supplies laid out on the beach.

But the options are limited.
Either they suddenly died. Two humans within a day of each other. Which makes no sense in itself, different body types are not likely to just keel over within hours of each other, and Amazingly they would have both dropped dead a day or so before a search plane is overhead, and couldn't signal, which from their transmissions over 3 days doesn't seem plausible,(not once does AE complain of injury or is there a hint she is injured or dying),
Or they were missed, chiefly because they didn't camp near a huge signal marker, the one place on that whole island any eyes or binoculars would naturally gravitate to, the Norwich. A place that held supplies. They camped down the beach from it and were missed? Either way, it doesn't sound right.
I can understand Gary's skepticism.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2012, 01:49:16 PM by dave burrell »
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Charles D Blackwell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #197 on: August 18, 2012, 03:42:15 PM »

New forum member here--Hello All.....I agree with Dave.  It doesn't make sense to me that they would not use the NC landmark in some way for reference or signaling.  Maybe they thought the plane on the reef would be spotted either from the air or by ship, and possibly were relying on their radio transmissions alone to get rescue attention, not focusing on visual signals.  It does seem strange to me, however, that none of the early post-loss radio signals (other than Betty's) that were reported didn't mention the NC (or we're here near this big shipwreck) in some manner, given that they are believed to still have some of their faculties and mental composure about them at that time.    Maybe they did and no one heard them.
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Greg Daspit

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #198 on: August 18, 2012, 03:50:07 PM »

Remains of a fire could be what the searchers saw as "signs of recent habitation" and repeatedly buzzed and in doing so, spent more time there than other areas.

Maybe since the aerial search happened several days after she was missing, AE could have left to search for water by that time and was 3 miles away on the other side of the island seeking shade and desperately needed sleep near the seven site when the planes arrived.  The sound of the planes wake her up, she does not know exactly where they already searched or how long they have been there. She goes to the ocean beach to be seen. By then the planes have already searched the outer beach and are zooming the signs they see near the NC. EA  sees the planes are not circling the island so tries to get back to the lagoon side to possbily be seen from the planes circling the NC area. But at that time the planes do one more pass circling the whole island, then leave to search the other islands. Or maybe she stayed on the ocean beach and the planes searched the lagoon beach in their last pass so didn't see her
3971R
 
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Greg Daspit

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #199 on: August 18, 2012, 04:03:29 PM »

It does seem strange to me, however, that none of the early post-loss radio signals (other than Betty's) that were reported didn't mention the NC (or we're here near this big shipwreck) in some manner

Welcome to the forum Charles
You may want to read this article about Dana Randolph who said he heard Amelia Earhart and "ship is on a reef" "south of equator"
About the same time Dana Randolph heard this mesage, Midway and Oahu Pan Am radio and direction finding stations got bearings on signals that cross near Gardner Island.
Edit: Midway also heard a signal about the same time
3971R
 
« Last Edit: August 19, 2012, 12:44:31 AM by Gregory Lee Daspit »
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Charles D Blackwell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #200 on: August 18, 2012, 09:45:50 PM »

Thanks for setting me straight Greg.  I read your other post about what AE called her "plane", and under that condition, "ship" may well have meant the NC; and even if it didn't, "ship on a reef"description should also work for the plane for anyone searching.  I stand corrected.  Too much stuff on the forum to easily digest everything.
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Gary LaPook

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #201 on: August 18, 2012, 10:25:51 PM »

It does seem strange to me, however, that none of the early post-loss radio signals (other than Betty's) that were reported didn't mention the NC (or we're here near this big shipwreck) in some manner

Welcome to the forum Charles
You may want to read this article about Dana Randolph who said he heard Amelia Earhart and "ship is on a reef" "south of equator"
About the same time Dana Randolph heard this mesage, Midway and Oahu Pan Am radio and direction finding stations got bearings on signals that cross near Gardner Island
This is incorrect, each of the bearings were taken on different occasions so you cannot say that they "cross" near Gardner.

gl
« Last Edit: August 20, 2012, 04:00:38 AM by Gary LaPook »
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dave burrell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #202 on: August 18, 2012, 11:59:48 PM »

It does seem strange to me, however, that none of the early post-loss radio signals (other than Betty's) that were reported didn't mention the NC (or we're here near this big shipwreck) in some manner

Welcome to the forum Charles
You may want to read this article about Dana Randolph who said he heard Amelia Earhart and "ship is on a reef" "south of equator"
About the same time Dana Randolph heard this mesage, Midway and Oahu Pan Am radio and direction finding stations got bearings on signals that cross near Gardner Island
This is incorrect eadh of the bearings were taken on different occasions so you cannot say that they "cross" near Gardner.

gl

Gary, if the messages did not "cross" at Gardner, why was the navy searching the Phoenix Group? At first they were sure she was 200+ miles north, Noonans fellow captains thought he would have turned back, George Putnam was convinced until he died she was lost near the Gilberts.

(BTW in reading newspaper reports he says she has a backup generator for the radio which is handcranked. The plane did not need to be on land to tranmit. Which two radio operators in California confirmed and said it was their opinion the messages came from a portable generator.Putnam also said she was well stocked with pistol, flares, rubber boat, and extra food and water as she knew this was the most dangerous leg. She wasn't worried about weight. He was convinced if she didn't die on impact she was alive for a long time)

But anyway back on topic of my question, Why was the Navy so quickly convinced she was in the Phoenix group and did a total about face from their orginal North of Howland search?
It was the radio signals correct?
So are you saying the Navy could not (or mistakenly) triangulated those signals, when in your opinion they could not be triangulated because the messages came at different times?
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dave burrell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #203 on: August 19, 2012, 12:29:22 AM »

Were Frederick Hooven able to jump into this thread he would tell us that Lt. Lambrecht's search didn't turn up AE and FN because they were no longer there

Only one week after the emergency landing on Gardner - no plane, no "SOS" written on the beach, no fire, no signal mirror, no NOTHING.  Hmmmm.

Quite a dilemma. So I go back and forth. If the messages were not hoaxed probably she was on Gardner. But then no trace was found. And remember Lambrecht spotted MESSAGES IN THE SAND on Syndey. So he wasn't just flying along at 1000 feet searching. His other pilot described the Norwich to a T, and accurated described red rust on it's sides, it's weight, and where it was broken. So,when he said zooming in and out, I think he meant what he said. If he could see worker's names of girlfriends written on the sandy beach of Sydney Island, he would have done likewise on Gardner. If there were any. Yet he found none. No SOS. Nothing worth nothing as being connected to AE. So she can wade back and forth to the plane for days, but can't write a big SOS in the sand. Takes what? 2 minutes? No energy involved with sand writing.
I think we give those pilots less credit than they deserve. They seem serious, sober pilots on a mission. And they found zilch which they thought worth noting.
The signs of recent habitation, if it was them, wasnt marked as distress signals. And there were no people. Which leaves only the choice that they were dead and left few clues it was them before they died. I doubt the navy missed them if alive.
But why did they die withing a week when by all accounts her plane had plenty of food and water, the norwich also left food and possibly water. There were plenty of juicy crabs to suck on. Yet they die within a week?
WHY?
Why if seriously injured, ready to die practically, did they continue to wade back and forth to the plane to transmit. They were walking and talking. Yet they die as if on cue when the planes arrive a couple days later.
It's a serious dink in the landed on Gardner theory. On one hand you have radio transmissions saying Gardner, on the other you have pilots saying sorry, wrong. No signs of life a week later. No plane, no debris of a plane, no rubber raft on the beach, no flares shot off if they were alive but looking for water inland(and Putnam said she had lots of flares), no bonfire on the beach. Nothing of note for the pilots to take interest in this place.

So the strongest evidence is 3 fixed radio signals saying Gardner is the place. Versus 3 sets of Navy pilots eyes saying no way.
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Greg Daspit

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #204 on: August 19, 2012, 01:19:38 AM »

It does seem strange to me, however, that none of the early post-loss radio signals (other than Betty's) that were reported didn't mention the NC (or we're here near this big shipwreck) in some manner

Welcome to the forum Charles
You may want to read this article about Dana Randolph who said he heard Amelia Earhart and "ship is on a reef" "south of equator"
About the same time Dana Randolph heard this mesage, Midway and Oahu Pan Am radio and direction finding stations got bearings on signals that cross near Gardner Island
This is incorrect eadh of the bearings were taken on different occasions so you cannot say that they "cross" near Gardner.

gl

Thanks Gary, I edited my post. To clarify, at about the same time Dana Randolph heard "Ship on a reef", Midway and Oahu Radio stations also heard signals on AE's frequency and Oahu DF station got a bearing that crossed near Gardner.  At a later occassion Midway DF also got a bearing that crossed near Gardner.
3971R
 
« Last Edit: August 19, 2012, 01:30:47 AM by Gregory Lee Daspit »
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Chris Johnson

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #205 on: August 19, 2012, 03:49:41 AM »

Dave,

you say that they saw enough of Gardner to describe acuratly the state of Norwich City etc BUT when they did one circle of McKean Island they also apparently appart from stating 'adobe' for the construction of the buildings give a accurate description?
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dave burrell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #206 on: August 19, 2012, 11:21:14 AM »

Dave,

you say that they saw enough of Gardner to describe acuratly the state of Norwich City etc BUT when they did one circle of McKean Island they also apparently appart from stating 'adobe' for the construction of the buildings give a accurate description?

Not sure I understand the question? It seems like they gave an adequate description of Mckeans to me. You do not?
They certainly gave a fine example of sand writings of Sydney.
That shows they were not flying at 400 to 1000 feet all the time.
You can see sand writings from a plane, then they were low enough over
gardner to see castaways and their writings.
None were found.
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Chris Johnson

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #207 on: August 19, 2012, 01:46:17 PM »

Dave,

plainer speak.

One circle around McKean (a perfunctory glance?) gave a 'detailed' description

Therefore how do we know from the description of Gardner that it wasn't just such a glance?
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dave burrell

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #208 on: August 19, 2012, 05:17:11 PM »

We dont of course. But I think they said Mckean was devoid of all vegetation. It probably wouldn't take more than one pass to see basically a sandbar and if castaways were standing or lying on a spit of sand.
I just trust these pilots were professionals, and really they had a lot to gain by finding them. There were reporters waiting for pictures, with dollars signs for the story, infamy as being "the" guys that finally found the famous missing Earhart. That might boost the career.
In short, I think they would have done their job well, and not half "butted" it. They wouldn't have missed anyone if they were alive. George putnam assured everyone Amelia had plenty of flares, in fact the first news from the Navy was that they had seen the flares and were headed that way. Now the flares turned out to be Meteors, but everyone said she had flares. So if they had flares they would have used them. Or built a fire on the beach, or laid out their rubber raft, or wrote a big SOS in the sand. So either they were dead or never there. I strongly doubt the navy missed two live humans and their wreckage a few days later.
« Last Edit: August 19, 2012, 05:59:39 PM by dave burrell »
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Gary LaPook

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Re: FAQ: Colorado / Lambrecht Search, 9 July 1937
« Reply #209 on: August 19, 2012, 08:04:26 PM »

We dont of course. But I think they said Mckean was devoid of all vegetation. It probably wouldn't take more than one pass to see basically a sandbar and if castaways were standing or lying on a spit of sand.
I just trust these pilots were professionals, and really they had a lot to gain by finding them. There were reporters waiting for pictures, with dollars signs for the story, infamy as being "the" guys that finally found the famous missing Earhart. That might boost the career.
In short, I think they would have done their job well, and not half "butted" it. They wouldn't have missed anyone if they were alive. George putnam assured everyone Amelia had plenty of flares, in fact the first news from the Navy was that they had seen the flares and were headed that way. Now the flares turned out to be Meteors, but everyone said she had flares. So if they had flares they would have used them. Or built a fire on the beach, or laid out their rubber raft, or wrote a big SOS in the sand. So either they were dead or never there. I strongly doubt the navy missed two live humans and their wreckage a few days later.
I don't think you meant to use the word "infamy". The most well known use of that word was on December 8, 1941, "Yesterday, December 7th 1941, a date which will live in infamy..."  does that ring a bell.

gl
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