Divers To Search For Stolen C-130 In The English Channel
Mechanic Reportedly Took The Plane In 1969 In An Effort To Fly Home To Virginia.
In May of 1969, military mechanic Sgt. Paul Meyer is reported to have stolen a C-130E transport plane from Mildenhall, Suffolk in an effort to fly home to see his wife Jane. But according to the BBC, Sgt. Meyer had been drinking, and the plane went down with Meyer aboard in the English Channel.
The official police report from the incident indicates that Sgt. Meyer escaped from police custody after a night of heavy drinking, impersonated an officer to have the airplane fueled, and then took off for the United States. The police report describes his action as a "highly irrational act", saying he was "under considerable emotional stress." He had been serving in Vietnam, and had been refused leave to go home to see his wife, according to the report.
Sgt. Meyer was not a pilot. It is not clear what caused the accident, but researchers give him a lot of credit for even getting the Herc off the ground.
Now, a group of salvagers thinks they have a good chance of locating the wreckage of the plane at the bottom of the English Channel. Deeper Dorset says they have "five good targets" in a 10-square-mile area about 30 miles off the coast of Portland Bill. They have launched a crowdfunding campaign with a goal of about $8,400, and plan to begin searching using side-scan sonar later this year.