Offering Aviation History & Adventure First-Hand!


The pilot and four passengers aboard a New Zealand tourist plane


Total Persons on Board:

Five -

Pilot: Brian Geoffrey Chadwick, age 47
Elwyn Saville, 20Valerie Gay Bignell Saville, 22
Louis Rowan, 25Darrell Stanley Shiels, 33


February 12th, 1962 - the flight departed at 9:52 in the morning


Cold temperatures, poor visibility and drizzle

Flight Route:

From Christchurch to Milford Sound, New Zealand, and back

Area Believed Crashed:

South Island, New Zealand

Reason for flight:


Type Plane:

A de Havilland D.H.90A Dragonfly, registered as ZK-AFB and powered by two 130-horsepower Gipsy Major engines

Search efforts: 

The estimated time of arrival at Milford was 12:37 that afternoon.    Afterwards, the largest aerial search ever undertaken in New Zealand, consisting of 17 civilian and 17 military aircraft – including both RNZAF and USAF aircraft from Operation Deep Freeze at Christchurch – combed Fiordland for any trace of the aircraft.  Covering 17,000 square miles, it was also one of the most extensive in the South Pacific, resulting in nothing found. 

Aviation enthusiasts in the Southern hemisphere still periodically search for this missing aircraft.

Controversy, Theories, and other Trivia: 

The missing Dragonfly became known as "The Honeymooners' Flight" because two of those lost were the recently married, Elwyn and Valerie Saville.

This mishap helped cement the reputation of a New Zealand "Bermuda Triangle"

Investigate Magazine maintains a $4,000 cash reward to anyone who discovers the wreckage and reports it exclusively to Investigate in the first instance.

Dragonfly Peak (44°24.535′ S, 168°52.756′ E) near Albert Burn Saddle in New Zealand was named by Bruce Moore and Paul Powell (the Chief Search and Rescue Officer of the New Zealand Federated Mountain Clubs) in March of 1962 for the missing plane.


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This page last updated Thursday, January 04, 2018

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