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The Boston Globe


For Coast Guard crew, closure

In November 1942, a US Coast Guard plane set forth on a daring rescue over the frozen tundra of Greenland, in search of a US Army Air Forces crew who had crashed during a search mission.

In a single-engine Grumman Duck aircraft, Lieutenant John Pritchard Jr. and his radioman, Petty Officer 1st Class Benjamin Bottoms, a Massachusetts-based airman, made an unprecedented landing on the forbidding ice cap to rescue two stranded members of the B-17’s crew. But the next day, after trying to save a third man, the plane crashed in whiteout conditions, leaving no survivors. Their bodies were never recovered.

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