Total Persons on Board:
Three USAF officers:
Robert H. Hodgin, 31, the aircraft commander
Gordon M. Insley, 32, observer
Ronald L. Kurtz, 22, pilot
March 10th, 1956
Cold temperatures, poor visibility, and high, layered clouds
From MacDill AFB, Florida, to an undisclosed overseas air base. It was
part of a four plane flight, set to refuel over the Mediterranean.
Area Believed Crashed:
Over/near the Mediterranean Sea, southeast of Port Say, an Algerian coastal
village near the Moroccan frontier. The bomber failed to meet its aerial
Reason for flight:
Transport for an oversea deployment
A six-engined, Boeing designed, B-47 'Stratojet'
A French news
agency report that the plane may have exploded in flight near Sebatna in eastern French
The Air Force reported that the French position was roughly the
same as the
last report on the missing plane— about 90 miles southwest of Oran.
A later report said the plane went down southeast of
Port Say, an Algerian coastal village near the Moroccan frontier. Planes and
French troops were reposed to have searched the area but found no wreckage.
official also said that ships from the Royal Navy abandoned their exercises in
the Mediterranean and searched for wreckage of the plane, and troops in French
and Spanish Morocco did likewise.
An exhaustive search failed to locate the aircraft, its
weapons, nor its crew.
Anytime anything nuclear goes missing, it is a cause of international
The two missing atomic cores are two of the 11 "Broken Arrows" — nuclear
bombs lost during air or sea mishaps, according to U.S. military records.
The former Soviet regime also lost several nuclear weapons in similar
accidents during the Cold War.