Mount Kologet, BC Bomber Crash, Feb 1950

B-36 Peacemaker Photo.jpg British Columbia CAN B-36 crash site 2-13-50.jpg


McChord Air Force Base (AP) -- Two tree snagged parachutes and tracks in the snow turned the search for five missing airmen today to the west side of Princess Royal Island.
They alone were unaccounted for of the 17 men who plunged from an ice-coated, blazing B-36 bomber off the northern British Columbia coast last Monday night.
Eleven men have been brought here and a twelfth was to be flown out today.
A Coast Guard spokesman at Ketchikan, said the tracks led down a small stream toward the west side of the island.
"It's my understanding from the crew of the plane making the report that the 'chutes and tracks are in an area not yet covered by any ground party," he added.
The Canadian destroyer Cayuga, which has served as a base for ground parties searching the area, moved to the vicinity of the new clues and was to dispatch a crew into the spot at dawn.
The search plane's report and that of returning ground parties that they had heard shots from inland of the rocky, heavily wooded island raised hopes for the rescue of the missing men.
Survivors brought here said it was possible the shots had been fired by Capt. THEODORE SCHREIER, of Madison, Wis., the co-pilot. They said he was the only man among the missing group known to have carried a pistol.
Meanwhile, S/Sgt. VITALE TRIPPODI, 23 year old radio operator from Brooklyn, joined 10 other survivors at the McChord base hospital.
A 12th man, Lieut. CHARLES C. POOLER, 36, engineer from Beloit, Kas., was to be flown here today. POOLER, suffering from a broken ankle, was found yesterday some distance inland by searchers from the Canadian destroyer.
TRIPPODI was returned in a litter aboard an air force flying boat. He could not be interviewed but his condition was described as "satisfactory."
Col. Harvey Porter, air force doctor, said earlier reports that the Brooklyn sergeant had suffered a broken ankle and two broken wrists were erroneous
but that he had "a moderately severe case of frost-bitten feet."
The young radio operator had no gloves and wore only oxfords on his feet when hi jumped. Other crew members were clad in arctic boots and clothing.
Lt. Comdr. A. D. Wier of the Royal Canadian navy, who treated TRIPPODI aboard the Cayuga, said his left foot became entangled in a cliff-side tree when he landed from the jump.

Continued on Page 2.