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Old 28th June 2022, 09:42
paulmcmillan paulmcmillan is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
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US Marine Corps VF-9M Fatal Accidents 1930


I have the following - Can anyone please place Wolfe and Ostertag in the correct aircraft

Text Description from "Marine Fighting Squadron Nine VF-9M"

300220 Curtiss F7C-1 Seahawk A-7664 Quantico, Virginia
300220 Curtiss F7C-1 Seahawk A-7665 Quantico, Virginia

2nd Lt Joseph Leon Wolfe
Birth 4 Feb 1903
Death 20 Feb 1930

2nd Lt William Rogers Ostertag
Birth 14 Apr 1901
Death 20 Feb 1930

"Second Lieutenants Joseph L Wolfe and William R. Ostertag were killed in what should have been an avoidable accident. In the afternoon of 20 February 1930, the two men took off from Brown Field to conduct Single Aircraft Battle Practice in F7C-1's. After sparring a while for position, Ostertag got on the tail of Wolfe's airplane. Wolfe, unable to outmanoeuvre his opponent, dove his airplane almost straight down, trying to pull away and shake him off, but Ostertag kept following close behind. As people watched in horror, both airplanes dove into the Potomac River, just off the mouth of Chopawomsic Creek, which formed the north border of Brown Field. It was the opinion of witnesses that, in all probability, Wolfe was looking backward at Ostertag, trying to shake him from his tail and because of the glassy surface of the river, misjudged his altitude and dove straight into the water. Ostertag, following close behind Wolfe and concentrating on getting a "kill." was unable to pull up in time and also dove into the river beside Wolfe. The deaths of these two young pilots had a sobering effect on everyone at Quantico and resulted in an investigation that called for stricter flying regulations governing battle practice. "

300611 Curtiss F7C-1 Seahawk A-7669 Quantico, Virginia
2nd Lt Guy Dewitt Chappell
Birth 25 Dec 1904
Death 11 Jun 1930

"On 11 June, the third fatal accident occurred when 2nd Lt. Guy D. Chappell crashed during a test flight in an F7C-1. The airplane had been used for touch-and-go landings on East Field the night before and was reported by its pilot as being "out of rig," with the left wing having a tendency to be heavy. A thorough inspection of the rigging indicated a definite shift had taken place and the airplane was grounded. The next morning the crew chief made the necessary rigging adjustments, and Lt. Chappel volunteered to test fly the airplane.

As part of the test he decided to power-dive the airplane. During his wide-open dive from 10,000 feet, the lower fuselage fitting, where the left wing flying wires are attached to fuselage, severed and the aircraft completely broke up, crashing into the woods just west of the field. All F7C-1's in service were immediately grounded for inspection. An investigation by a Marine trouble board recommended that all wing and fuselage fittings be modified and made stronger on the remaining airplanes of this type. It also ordered that all terminal-velocity dives be prohibited until the modification was completed. "

Thanks Paul
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