TBT&J Find Missing WWII B26 Bomber In Gulf of Mexico
The following is a summery of the documentary that TBT &J produced with the title; "World War II Mystery Solved."
After it was established by a group of people that the plane wreck that Tim Wicburg had been talking about for 19 years was real, TBT &J was formed.
On the belief that this was one of Batista's planes on route from Havana to Tampa at the time he was overthrown, we thought we were looking for gold.
To ensure that all our under and above water actions were done in the correct manner as to be legal and not offensive we hired an admiralty lawyer and an archeologist. We also hired Paradigme Productions to record our endeavor.
The attorney's experts identified the craft as a B26 bomber after we sent them the radio call tag recovered from the control panel of the plane. This plane was reported missing November 16,1942 with six crew members aboard. Soon after, 2 bodies were found floating in the Gulf, the other four bodies were never found. After receiving the names of the crew, we were able to locate three families out of six. Five members of one family came to Fort Myers and we did a burial at sea. This gave us the final incentive to investigate and determine the cause of the crash. This is where we brought in an expert on plane crash investigation. After many dives of plotting grids, taking measurements and documenting the site, we took everything we had to an aircraft museum in Polk City, Florida. called Fantasy of Flight.
Their B26 expert spent the entire day with us and allowed us to climb inside the B26 they have there.
By this time, NBC news Phoenix, newspapers across the country and numerous web sites had picked up our story.
To further determine the cause of the crash we raised the prop and transported it to a world renown prop expert and fabricator in Opalaka, Florida. He determined that one prop failed during flight due to a gross malfunction of the engine.
Next on our agenda was to take the prop and various other plane parts back to Fantasy of Flight for a B26 reunion, where our experts gave a seminar.
In December we are having an unveiling ceremony at the Ft. Myers Historical Museum.
Last but not least we are looking for grants for our 501 C3 corporation now named “Underwater Historical Explorations” or “UHE” in order to produce a documentary.
T: Tom O'Brien: operations manager
B: Brian Ulman: fabricator of custom excavating equipment
T: Captain Tim Wicburg: original finder of site
J: Captain Jon Hazelbaker: 2005 Inductee Commercial Diving Hall of Fame
Research: Tracy Miller