List of accidents and incidents involving military aircraft (1955–1959)

crashed195744-29125famous airplane crashin 1955 with Battery C, 36th AAA Missile Battalionwent missing
This is a list of notable accidents and incidents involving military aircraft grouped by the year in which the accident or incident occurred.wikipedia
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Fort George G. Meade

Fort MeadeCamp MeadeFort Meade, Maryland
The first significant Nike Ajax missile accident occurs at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland, on a rainy afternoon this date, when, at 1235 hrs., Battery C, 36th AAA Missile Battalion, located south of Maryland 602 (now Route 198), was "practicing Nike procedures" when the rocket booster on an Ajax which was being elevated on its launcher suddenly ignites and the missile takes off. Crewman SFC Stanley C. Kozak, standing seven feet away, is caught in the flareback from booster ignition and suffers minor burns. Initial reports stated that the missile exploded about three miles (5 km) away, "several thousand feet in the air." Later accounts state that the missile, which was not in the fully upright launch position when it unexpectedly left the rail, suffered structural damage as it took off, "coupled with rapid initial acceleration, rendered the missile aerodynamically unsound and led to the break up. The fact the crew had not removed the propulsion safety pin during the drill contributed to the failure of the sustainer motor to start. And, since the launch was unintended, the missile was not under radar control. Neither the missile nor the booster exploded in flight. The booster separated and fell onto Barber's Trailer Court more than a mile from the launch site. Fuel tank fragments fell on the Baltimore-Washington Expressway where the fuel and oxidizer caused a fire but little or no damage. The missile nose section was found 500 yards from the launcher with the guidance assembly still attached." The Army board of inquiry isolated the cause as an electrical short caused by rain water in the junction box on the outside rear of the launcher control trailer. This condition defeated the crew's pre-launch safety checks.
Fort Meade also had the first Nike Ajax surface-to-air missiles in December 1953 (operational May 1954) and an accidental firing occurred in 1955 with Battery C, 36th AAA Missile Battalion.

Monongahela River

MonongahelaMonongahela ValleyMonongahela River Valley
USAF North American TB-25N Mitchell, 44-29125, on cross country flight from Nellis AFB, Nevada to Olmsted AFB, Pennsylvania, after departing Selfridge AFB, Michigan suffers fuel starvation NE of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in mid-afternoon, attempts to divert to Greater Pittsburgh AFB, ditches in the Monongahela River at the 4.9 mi marker, west of the Homestead High-Level Bridge, drifts ~1.5 mi downstream in 8–10 knots. current, remaining afloat for 10–15 minutes. All six crew evacuate but two are lost in the 35 °F water before rescue. Search for sunken bomber suspended 14 February with no success – aircraft is thought to have possibly settled in submerged gravel pit area in 32 ft of water, ~150 ft from shore, possibly now covered by 10–15 feet of silt. This crash remains one of the Pittsburgh region's unsolved mysteries.
The river was the site of a famous airplane crash that has become the subject of numerous urban legends and conspiracy theories.

1955 Hawaii R6D-1 crash

crashedcrashesMarch 22 crash
A United States Navy Douglas R6D-1 Liftmaster, BuNo 131612, c/n 43715, of Air Transport Squadron 3 (VR-3), assigned to the Military Air Transport Service, hits a cliff on Pali Kea Peak in the Waianae Range on Oahu, 15 mi northwest of Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii, United States, at 0203 hrs., killing all 57 passengers and nine crew, making it the worst heavier-than-air disaster in U.S. naval aviation history.
*List of accidents and incidents involving military aircraft (1955–59)

1956 Atlantic R6D-1 disappearance

disappeareddisappearsdisappearance
A United States Navy Douglas R6D-1 Liftmaster, BuNo 131588, c/n 43691/321, of Air Transport Squadron 6 (VR-6), assigned to the Military Air Transport Service, disappears over the Atlantic Ocean about 150 mi north of the Azores. All 59 aboard – 50 U.S. Air Force passengers from Lincoln Air Force Base and the crew of nine U.S. Navy personnel – died. Another source cites 11 October: as crash date.
List of accidents and incidents involving military aircraft (1955–59)

Martin P4M Mercator

P4M-1Q MercatorMartin P4M-1Q MercatorP-4M-1Q Mercator
;6 January : A U.S. Navy Martin P4M-1Q Mercator, BuNo 124373, of JQ-3, JQ tailcode, with 12 aboard, loses power in its port reciprocating engine while on final approach to NAS Norfolk, Virginia, comes down at 22nd Bay Street and East Ocean View Avenue in Ocean View, "demolishing three small houses and damaging three others. The plane and the last house it struck burned. Four of the airmen were unaccounted for. The eight survivors, of whom only one was seriously injured, were hospitalized. All were suffering from shock. Three civilians – occupants of three of the houses that were struck – were injured, none critically," stated the Associated Press.
The crew was rescued by HMS Chevron. One P4M-1Q of JQ-3 crashed at Ocean View, Virginia, on 6 January 1958, when it lost an engine on approach to NAS Norfolk, Virginia, killing four crew and injuring three civilians.

Boeing C-97 Stratofreighter

C-97C-97 StratofreighterBoeing C-97G Stratofreighter
;21 March or 22 March:A United States Air Force Boeing C-97C-35-BO Stratofreighter, 50-0702, c/n 16246, lost at sea over Pacific Ocean near Japan without trace.
19 January 1958 – USAF C-97A 49-2597 en route to Wake Island from Honolulu went missing over the Pacific Ocean with seven crew on board.

44th Missile Wing

44th Bombardment Wing44th Strategic Missile Wing44th Bombardment Group
;5 January :Two Boeing B-47E Stratojets of the 44th Bomb Wing from Lake Charles AFB, Louisiana, collide over the Gulf of Mexico during refuelling Wednesday night, causing one to crash and the other to limp home to base with damage, sans its observer who bailed out over the Gulf.

Lake Charles Air Force Station

Lake Charles AFB
;5 January :Two Boeing B-47E Stratojets of the 44th Bomb Wing from Lake Charles AFB, Louisiana, collide over the Gulf of Mexico during refuelling Wednesday night, causing one to crash and the other to limp home to base with damage, sans its observer who bailed out over the Gulf.

Gulf of Mexico

GulfGulf CoastGUL'''F of Mexico
;5 January :Two Boeing B-47E Stratojets of the 44th Bomb Wing from Lake Charles AFB, Louisiana, collide over the Gulf of Mexico during refuelling Wednesday night, causing one to crash and the other to limp home to base with damage, sans its observer who bailed out over the Gulf.

Cameron, Louisiana

CameronCameron, LALeesburg
Air-sea rescue teams began a search of the Gulf in an area some 30 miles (48 km) SE of Cameron, Louisiana, on the Gulf coast.

Albany, Georgia

AlbanyAlbany, GAEast Albany
The pilot of the recovered bomber stated that the lost plane apparently smashed down on his aircraft from above, "leaving wheel tracks on the cabin before it spun off to crash in Gulf waters. Capt. Morris E. Shiver, 29, of Albany, Ga., said 'we never knew what hit us' as the two six-jet bombers crashed together Wednesday night about 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Cameron, La. An armada of planes and ships searched Thursday for the four airmen missing after the crash. Three of them were aboard the B47 which plunged into the Gulf, while the fourth, 1st Lt. Matthew Gemery, of Lakewood, Ohio, an observer, could have returned on his limping plane had he waited another minute before ejecting himself. They identified Maj. Sterling T. Carroll, 33, of Port Arthur, Tex., as the commander of the plane that returned, and Shiver as the pilot.

Lakewood, Ohio

LakewoodLakewood, OHCity of Lakewood
The pilot of the recovered bomber stated that the lost plane apparently smashed down on his aircraft from above, "leaving wheel tracks on the cabin before it spun off to crash in Gulf waters. Capt. Morris E. Shiver, 29, of Albany, Ga., said 'we never knew what hit us' as the two six-jet bombers crashed together Wednesday night about 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Cameron, La. An armada of planes and ships searched Thursday for the four airmen missing after the crash. Three of them were aboard the B47 which plunged into the Gulf, while the fourth, 1st Lt. Matthew Gemery, of Lakewood, Ohio, an observer, could have returned on his limping plane had he waited another minute before ejecting himself. They identified Maj. Sterling T. Carroll, 33, of Port Arthur, Tex., as the commander of the plane that returned, and Shiver as the pilot.

Port Arthur, Texas

Port ArthurPort Arthur, TXPort Arthur Transit
The pilot of the recovered bomber stated that the lost plane apparently smashed down on his aircraft from above, "leaving wheel tracks on the cabin before it spun off to crash in Gulf waters. Capt. Morris E. Shiver, 29, of Albany, Ga., said 'we never knew what hit us' as the two six-jet bombers crashed together Wednesday night about 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Cameron, La. An armada of planes and ships searched Thursday for the four airmen missing after the crash. Three of them were aboard the B47 which plunged into the Gulf, while the fourth, 1st Lt. Matthew Gemery, of Lakewood, Ohio, an observer, could have returned on his limping plane had he waited another minute before ejecting himself. They identified Maj. Sterling T. Carroll, 33, of Port Arthur, Tex., as the commander of the plane that returned, and Shiver as the pilot.

Danville, Indiana

DanvilleDanville, IN
The other three missing airmen were Maj. Jean S. Pierson, of Danville, Ind., aircraft commander; Capt. David O. Crump, of Albermarle, N.C. [sic], copilot, and father of six children, and 1st Lt. Rodney P. Egelston of Levelland, Tex., observer-bombardier."

Albemarle, North Carolina

AlbemarleAlbemarle, NCAlbermarle
The other three missing airmen were Maj. Jean S. Pierson, of Danville, Ind., aircraft commander; Capt. David O. Crump, of Albermarle, N.C. [sic], copilot, and father of six children, and 1st Lt. Rodney P. Egelston of Levelland, Tex., observer-bombardier."

Levelland, Texas

LevellandTexas (Levelland)
The other three missing airmen were Maj. Jean S. Pierson, of Danville, Ind., aircraft commander; Capt. David O. Crump, of Albermarle, N.C. [sic], copilot, and father of six children, and 1st Lt. Rodney P. Egelston of Levelland, Tex., observer-bombardier."

Braman, Oklahoma

Braman
;6 January :"BRAMAN, Okla. (AP) – A crippled B47 six-engine jet bomber barrel-rolled, crashed and exploded in a wheat field a mile east of here Thursday, killing all three crewmen aboard. The plane, from McConnell Air Force Base, Wichita, Kan., disintegrated into hundreds of pieces after the explosion in this farm area of North Central Oklahoma near the Kansas border. Maj. Lawrence Tacker of McConnell AFB identified the dead as: Capt. Wayne E. Andrew of Yellow Springs, Ohio, commander of the plane; 1st Lt. Joseph C. Cook, co-pilot, Sunland, Calif.; Capt. William C. Berry, observer, Dayton, Ohio. The wives and families of the men are living temporarily in Wichita. O. O. McMasters, who lives here, said he heard the plane coming from the north and in distress.

Associated Press

APThe Associated PressAP Radio
;6 January :"BRAMAN, Okla. (AP) – A crippled B47 six-engine jet bomber barrel-rolled, crashed and exploded in a wheat field a mile east of here Thursday, killing all three crewmen aboard. The plane, from McConnell Air Force Base, Wichita, Kan., disintegrated into hundreds of pieces after the explosion in this farm area of North Central Oklahoma near the Kansas border. Maj. Lawrence Tacker of McConnell AFB identified the dead as: Capt. Wayne E. Andrew of Yellow Springs, Ohio, commander of the plane; 1st Lt. Joseph C. Cook, co-pilot, Sunland, Calif.; Capt. William C. Berry, observer, Dayton, Ohio. The wives and families of the men are living temporarily in Wichita. O. O. McMasters, who lives here, said he heard the plane coming from the north and in distress.

Wichita, Kansas

WichitaWichita, KSWichita area
;6 January :"BRAMAN, Okla. (AP) – A crippled B47 six-engine jet bomber barrel-rolled, crashed and exploded in a wheat field a mile east of here Thursday, killing all three crewmen aboard. The plane, from McConnell Air Force Base, Wichita, Kan., disintegrated into hundreds of pieces after the explosion in this farm area of North Central Oklahoma near the Kansas border. Maj. Lawrence Tacker of McConnell AFB identified the dead as: Capt. Wayne E. Andrew of Yellow Springs, Ohio, commander of the plane; 1st Lt. Joseph C. Cook, co-pilot, Sunland, Calif.; Capt. William C. Berry, observer, Dayton, Ohio. The wives and families of the men are living temporarily in Wichita. O. O. McMasters, who lives here, said he heard the plane coming from the north and in distress.

Yellow Springs, Ohio

Yellow SpringsYellow Springs, OHOhio
;6 January :"BRAMAN, Okla. (AP) – A crippled B47 six-engine jet bomber barrel-rolled, crashed and exploded in a wheat field a mile east of here Thursday, killing all three crewmen aboard. The plane, from McConnell Air Force Base, Wichita, Kan., disintegrated into hundreds of pieces after the explosion in this farm area of North Central Oklahoma near the Kansas border. Maj. Lawrence Tacker of McConnell AFB identified the dead as: Capt. Wayne E. Andrew of Yellow Springs, Ohio, commander of the plane; 1st Lt. Joseph C. Cook, co-pilot, Sunland, Calif.; Capt. William C. Berry, observer, Dayton, Ohio. The wives and families of the men are living temporarily in Wichita. O. O. McMasters, who lives here, said he heard the plane coming from the north and in distress.

Dayton, Ohio

DaytonDayton, OHDayton area
;6 January :"BRAMAN, Okla. (AP) – A crippled B47 six-engine jet bomber barrel-rolled, crashed and exploded in a wheat field a mile east of here Thursday, killing all three crewmen aboard. The plane, from McConnell Air Force Base, Wichita, Kan., disintegrated into hundreds of pieces after the explosion in this farm area of North Central Oklahoma near the Kansas border. Maj. Lawrence Tacker of McConnell AFB identified the dead as: Capt. Wayne E. Andrew of Yellow Springs, Ohio, commander of the plane; 1st Lt. Joseph C. Cook, co-pilot, Sunland, Calif.; Capt. William C. Berry, observer, Dayton, Ohio. The wives and families of the men are living temporarily in Wichita. O. O. McMasters, who lives here, said he heard the plane coming from the north and in distress.

North American P-51 Mustang

P-51 MustangP-51Mustang
;6 January :A ferry pilot in a flight of three North American F-51 Mustangs from Norton Air Force Base, California, to McClellan Air Force Base, California, bails out into the Sierra Pelona Mountains N of Los Angeles in the first snowstorm of the season after suffering engine failure.

Sierra Pelona Mountains

Sierra Pelona
;6 January :A ferry pilot in a flight of three North American F-51 Mustangs from Norton Air Force Base, California, to McClellan Air Force Base, California, bails out into the Sierra Pelona Mountains N of Los Angeles in the first snowstorm of the season after suffering engine failure.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles, CaliforniaLos Angeles, CALA
;6 January :A ferry pilot in a flight of three North American F-51 Mustangs from Norton Air Force Base, California, to McClellan Air Force Base, California, bails out into the Sierra Pelona Mountains N of Los Angeles in the first snowstorm of the season after suffering engine failure.