23 Feb Here in History: Beautiful Betsy
Here in History: Beautiful Betsy
With Betty Laver
On 26th February 1945, “Beautiful Betsy” a B24D Liberator, was flying from Darwin to Brisbane with six American officers and two Royal Air Force crew members. The two crew members were Flight Lieutenant Cook and Flying Officer Cannon. Cannon was going to Brisbane to be married and Cook was to be his best man.
Sadly, this craft never reached its destination, and it was feared that they had all perished. Although a widespread search was held, no sign of the missing aircraft was found at the time. In 1994, almost 50 years after this crucial day, a chance discovery by a Queensland National Parks Ranger, ended the mystery that surrounded the disappearance.
The ranger, Mark Roe, was inspecting an area on Kroombit Tops National Park about 100km from Gladstone when he came across the wreckage. When news of this discovery was conveyed to the Americans, they immediately dispatched a recovery team of eleven persons to sift through the remains.
While there is no way of knowing what really happened on that fateful day at least the relatives of the deceased were able to find closure.
This site is now a tourist attraction at Kroombit Tops, about 80 kilometres from Gladstone, situated is steep and unforgiving country high up in the Many Peaks Range.