Bradley Field, CT. – August 4, 1944

Bradley Field, Windsor Locks, Connecticut – August 4, 1944

 

 

P-47 Thunderbolt – U.S. Air Force Photo

     On August 4, 1944, a flight of four P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft took off from Bradley Field for a formation training flight.  Just after take off, one aircraft, a P-47D, (Ser. No. 42-22514), piloted by Lt. Sylvester F. Currier, began experiencing engine trouble.  After informing the flight leader of his situation Lt. Currier was ordered to return to Bradley Field.  As Currier was about 1.5 miles from the field black smoke began coming from the airplane’s exhaust.  The flight leader advised the lieutenant to land on the nearest runway as there was very little wind.  Unfortunately Lt. Currier’s aircraft didn’t make it to the runway, and crashed in a wooded area about a quarter of a mile from the end of Runway 6.  The engine and landing gear were torn away, and although Lt. Currier was strapped to his seat, the seat broke loose and the lieutenant was slammed against the instrument panel.  A small fire erupted, but was extinguished quickly by rescue crews.  The aircraft was a total wreck.    

     Lt. Currier was not seriously injured.  He’d received his pilot’s rating on April 15, 1944.

     Source:

     U. S. Army Air Forces Aircraft Accident report #45-8-4-15    

Windsor Locks, CT – June 15, 1947

Windsor Locks, Connecticut – June 15, 1947

    

P-47 Thunderbolt - U.S. Air Force Photo

P-47 Thunderbolt – U.S. Air Force Photo

     On June 15, 1947, Captain William H. Greenleaf, piloting a P-47N, (#44-89106) took off from Bradley Field in Windsor Locks with seven other P-47 aircraft for a simulated combat training mission.  After the aircraft formed up over Bradley Field at 5,000 feet they split into two flights of four aircraft each, and each flight took turns making simulated attacks against the other.  

     When it was their turn, the group in which Captain Greenleaf was part of, climbed to 7,500 feet and made three successive mock attacks against the other group which was circling below at 5,000 feet.  After making two mock runs without incident, they climbed again for a third.  It was during this third mock attack that Captain Greenleaf’s aircraft never came out of the dive, and crashed at a step angle in a wooded area where it exploded and burned about 1/4 mile south of Bradley Field.     

     Capt. Greenleaf was killed instantly.

     Investigators were unable to determine the cause of the accident. 

     Captain Greenleaf was assigned to the 118th Fighter Squadron, 103rd Fighter Group, of the Connecticut Air National Guard.

     Source: Army Air Force Crash Investigation Report, # 47-6-15-1   

   

Bradley Field, CT – December 26, 1948

Bradley Field, Windsor Locks, Connecticut – December 26, 1948

 

     On December 26, 1948, an F-47N military aircraft, (Ser. No. 44-89370N), piloted by Captain James E. Elsner, 29, took off from Bradley Field in Windsor Locks for a training flight.  After a flight of about 50 minutes, the captain was returning to Bradley when he noticed the aircraft loosing power, and then the engine stopped completely.  Knowing he couldn’t make the runway, the pilot retracted the landing gear and made a crash landing through some trees and power lines before skidding to a stop about 500 feet short of the runway.  The plane didn’t catch fire, and the pilot escaped without injury.    

     Source: Air Force Accident Report, #48-C-12-26-1

Bradley Field, CT – May 24, 1942

Bradley Field, Windsor Locks, Connecticut – May 24, 1942 

    

P-40 Warhawk  U.S. Air Force Photo

P-40 Warhawk
U.S. Air Force Photo

     At 2:45 p.m., on May 24, 1942, 2nd Lt. Charles Jaslow was attempting to take off from Bradley Field.  Just as his aircraft, a P-40E, (Ser. No. 40-396), left the ground, it was struck by a cross wind and pushed towards a mound of dirt at a construction area just to the side of the runway.  His plane’s landing gear struck near the top of the mound and was torn away.   The plane then hit the ground and skidded to a stop, but did not catch fire.  Fortunately Lt. Jaslow didn’t suffer any serious injuries.     

     Lt. Jaslow was assigned to the 65th Pursuit Squadron, 57th Pursuit Group.

     Source:

    U.S. Army Air Corps Technical Report Of Aircraft Accident #42-5-24-4   

Bradley Field, CT – May 25, 1942

Bradley Field, Windsor Locks, Connecticut – May 25, 1942 

    

P-40 Warhawk  U.S. Air Force Photo

P-40 Warhawk
U.S. Air Force Photo

     At 4:30 p.m., on May 25, 1942, 2nd Lt. Thomas J. Beasley had just taken off  from Bradley Field in a P-40E,  (Ser. No. 40-392), when he discovered a problem with the aircraft’s oil pressure system and attempted to return to base for an emergency landing.  After receiving instructions from Bradley tower, he was attempting to land when he suddenly saw another aircraft making for the same runway.  At that time he made a skidding turn to the left in attempt to get into the wind, but his left wing dropped in a stall.  Lt. Beasley was able to regain control of the plane, but due to his now diminished air speed the aircraft dropped flat onto the runway from an altitude of 30 feet and proceeded to skid for 75 yards before coming to rest and catching fire.   Although the aircraft was a total loss, Lt Beasley escaped with minor injuries. 

     The aircraft was assigned to the 66th Fighter Squadron, 57th Fighter Group. 

     Source: U. S. Army Air Corps Technical Report Of Aircraft Accident #42-5-25-9    

Bradley Field, CT – April 4, 1942

Bradley Field, Windsor Locks, Connecticut – April 4, 1942

    

P-40 Warhawk  U.S. Air Force Photo

P-40 Warhawk
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On April 4, 1942, 2nd Lt. Robert E. Gibson was landing at Bradley Field in a P-40E (Ser. No. 40-425) when a strong crosswind suddenly pushed the aircraft off the runway and into an obstruction wrecking the plane.  Fortunately Lt. Gibson only received minor injuries.

     Lt. Gibson received his pilot’s rating March 9, 1942.  He was assigned to the 66th Pursuit Squadron.   

     Source: Army Air Corps Technical Report Of Aircraft Accident #42-4-4-2

East Granby, CT – July 9, 1982

East Granby, Connecticut – July 9, 1982

     On July 9, 1982, 1st Lieutenant Daniel Peabody, 27, of the Connecticut Air National Guard, took off from Bradley Field in Windsor Locks in an A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft, (78-0585), for a routine training flight.   His was one of three A-10s taking part in the training exercise.  All of the aircraft were assigned to the 103rd Tactical Fighter Group based at Windsor Locks.

     At 3:35 p.m. as he was returning to Bradley Filed and approaching Runway 6, the aircraft lost all power. and Lt. Peabody was forced to eject at an altitude of only 1,000 feet.  While he landed safely, the A-10 crashed in a field in East Granby, tumbled across a roadway, and through a boundary fence at the edge of  Bradley Field, leaving a debris field that stretched more than 100 yards.    

     Sources:

     The Hour – Norwich Ct. “Air Force To Investigate Jet Crash”, July 10, 1982, Pg. 3, by Martin J. Waters.  

     The Sun, (Westerly, R.I.), “Guard Pilot Safely Ejects From Fighter Before Crash”, July 11, 1982

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