Missing WW2 Fighter Plane Found, Solving 80-Year Puzzle

By: | December 2nd, 2023

Solving a decades-old mystery, a fighter plane that disappeared in a daring raid on Italy just days before the Allies launched their invasion has been found.

The discovery puts an end to a lingering mystery that has endured for decades

Unveiling a piece of history frozen in time, the detection of the aircraft marks the closure of a mystery that has captivated historians and aviation enthusiasts alike since the shadows of World War II

The P-38 Lightning disappeared on August 25, 1943, during an attack

Tasked with neutralizing Italy’s air force, the mission achieved resounding success by eliminating 65 enemy planes. Of the 166 P-38s departing from Tunisia that day, 137 reached their objective. Various mechanical issues forced some planes to retreat, while 2nd Lt Singer’s aircraft vanished entirely, never reaching its target.

According to Air Force records, he was last sighted flying near Manfredonia, a town situated 22 miles east of Foggia.

Locating the long-lost wreckage of plane after 80 years

Eighty years after the disappearance, divers have located the wreckage of Singer’s plane, resting at a depth of 40 feet beneath the Gulf of Manfredonia.

Fabio Bisciotti, the diver who identified the wreckage, expressed surprise at its remarkably good condition after eight decades. He speculated that a mechanical failure caused the plane to plunge into the water, ruling out substantial damage from anti-aircraft fire due to its considerable distance from the coast—approximately four miles. However, the absence of a body suggests that 2nd Lt Singer possibly survived the crash but tragically succumbed to drowning.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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