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VPB-2 Memorial
VPB-2 OTU-3 - In Memorium - OTU-3 VPB-2

July 10th, 1945

"Eternal Father Strong To Save"
The Navy Hymn
Sailor Aviators Version

Eternal Father, Strong to Save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bid'st the mighty Ocean deep
Its' own appointed limits keep;
O hear us when we cry to thee,
for those in peril on the sea.

Lord, guard and guide the men who fly
Through the great spaces in the sky.
Be with them always in the air,
In dark'ning storms or sunlight fair.
O, Hear us when we lift our prayer,
For those in peril in the air.

But when at length our course is run,
Our work for home and country done,
Of all the souls that flew and sailed,
Let not one life in thee be failed,
But hear from heaven our sailors cry,
And grant eternal life on high.

May all our departed shipmates rest in peace.

Eternal Father by the U.S. Navy Band's Sea Chanters (668 kbytes - WAV file)

On 9 July 1945 at 1907 hrs, PBM-3S BUNO: 6545 took off from NAS Banana River, Florida for radar patrol over the Bahamas. The aircraft gave a radio transmission of 25-22N, 77-34W at 2116 hrs 10 July 1945 and was not heard from after that.

LT(jg) J.B. WHITE (USNR)
ENS Wendall E. LA VOY (USNR)
ENS Wesley E. LEWIS (USNR)
AMM3 James E. EISLEY
AMM3 Thomas A. GARNER
S1 ARM John L. HURT
S1 ARM Glen L. WINDER
S1 ARM Edward J. WYATT
AOM3 Thomas C. OLIVER
S1 AOM Gene S. BOYER
S1 AOM Bernard M. ZLOTNICK
S1 AOM Stephen WOROBECK





UPDATE "...Thomas Arthur Garner Memorial Page - Bermuda-Triangle http://www.bermuda-triangle.org/..." Contributed by [12OCT2009]

UPDATE "...It was quite a surprise for me to find the feature in this website about the 10 July 1945 loss of PBM3 Bu#: 6545 (SEE: VP-2 Crew - In Memorium - VP-2 Crew ). One of the crewmembers, AMM3 Thomas Arthur Garner, was my older brother. I still have the Navy correspondence that includes a list of all of the crewmembers and their next of kin, but had figured that, for the most part, the incident and crew had long since been forgotten. It would be interesting to hear from anyone who was related to any of those guys...Don Garner vidoc@att.net..." [23JUL2002]

UPDATE "...Dear Mr. Woerner, I found your name and e-mail address while looking at the Patrol Squadron Homepage. I am a Naval Aviation History buff and I had to ask you a question. My Uncle (mother's brother) was killed in WWII while a member of VPB-2 OTU-3 stationed at Banana River FL 10 July 1945. My mother was 14 at the time and knows nothing about it. Over the years I have written to every U.S. Navy record keeping facility I can think of and have ammassed a file on the subject. Navy records are very vague. Since you were there are the time, I was hoping you could fill in the blanks for me. I'll tell you what I know...

My Uncle was AOM S 1c Bernard M. ZLOTNICK. From his letters, I found that he was a bow gunner...On 9 July 1945 at 1907 hrs, PBM-3S Bu. No. 6545 took off from NAS Banana River, Florida for radar patrol over the Bahamas. The crew was as follows:

Lt. (jg) J.B. WHITE (USNR)
Ens. Wendall E. LA VOY (USNR)
Ens. Wesley E. LEWIS (USNR)
AMM3c James E. EISLEY
AMM3c Thomas A. GARNER
S1c ARM John L. HURT
S1c ARM Glen L. WINDER
S1c ARM Edward J. WYATT
AOM3c Thomas C. OLIVER
S1c AOM Gene S. BOYER
S1c AOM Bernard M. ZLOTNICK
S1c AOM Stephen WOROBECK


The aircraft gave a radio transmission of 25-22N, 77-34W at 2116 hrs 10 July 1945 and was not heard from after that. There was an extensive search for 21 days including a carrier sweep and then it was called off. As far as I know, nothing was ever found. According to what my Grandmother told me before she died, my uncle and Worobeck were good friends, having met each other in line while enlisting at Brooklyn N.Y. They went all through boot camp and AOM school in Jacksonville FL together. Thats all we know. If you remember the event or could fill in any blanks or give me some ideas for finding additional material, I'd appreciate hearing from you. Sincerely, Charles W. Crowe, Jr. cwcrowe@execpc.com..."

UPDATE "...I was stationed there then and apparently in the same Combat Aircrewman Training Program that your uncle was in when he was lost...I'll tell you whatever I can...we lost one of own PBMs on Dec 5, 1945 with my best friend S1c(AOM)(CA) Fred Zawicki when they went to search for the 5 TBMs of the famous Flight 19 in the Bermuda Triangle. Regards..." Bob Woerner robertewoerner@cs.com

UPDATE The following was contributed by Ted Darcey wreck1@localnet.com WebSite: http://wfirg.com/ [02DEC97]

"...Of the 13,226 Navy accidents the occurred in Florida, it is one of the eight PBM's lost off the coast fatalities...

Bu#: 6545
Type: PBM-3S
Date: 450710
Sqd: VPB2-OTU#3
Station: NAS Banana River
Pilot: White, JB Lt/MIA
Remarks: Flt to Great Exuma Island, Bahamas
Cause: Weather
Lat/Long: 25-22N 77-34 W (last reported)


Crew: LAVOY, WENDALL E ENS/MIA, LEWIS, WESLEY E ENS/MIA, EISLEY, JAMES E AMM3C/MIA, GARNER, THOMAS A AMM3C/MIA, HURT, JOHN L S1C/MIA, WINDER, GLEN L S1C/MIA, WYATT, EDWARD J S1C/MIA, OLIVER, THOMAS C AOM3C/MIA, BOYER, GENE S S1C/MIA, ZLOTWICK, BERNARD M S1C/MIA, and WOROBECK, STEPHEN S1C/MIA

UPDATE "...Ted Darcey has a company called "WFI RESEARCH GROUP." His company is a private research group with twenty years experience in military research available for public use on a fee per case basis...this Group maintains extensive databases. Fortunately, one of the databases covers U.S. NAVY AIRCRAFT accidents from 1913-1955.." Thanks Ted for the above information. Nevins..."

UPDATE "...I noticed that Fred Noyes flew in Training 49, PBM-5 BuNo 59225, the PBM that was lost while searching for Flight 19. The crew that I was in also flew flights in this ill-fated plane. We made three flights in Training 49, PBM-5 BuNo 59225 on dates 7/25/45, 8/14/45 and 9/6/45..." FOSTER, S1C Douglas dfoster@apex.net [15FEB2004]

UPDATE "...PBM-5; 59225; VPB, ATU#3; Training sqd #49; Emergency search for missing Flight-19; Pilot;Lt(jg). Walter G.Jeffrey #329291-PPC (voluntered to act PPC), Ens. Charles D.Arceneaux, Lt(jg). Harry Grimes Cone, Ens. Roger Murray Allen, Ens. Lloyd A.Eliason, Aom1c. Alfred Joseph Zywick, Aom3c. James Fredreick Osterheid, Aom. John Thomas Menendez, Arm1c. Philip Bird Neeman, Arm3c. James frederick Jordan, Arm3c. Robert C.Cameron, Amm1c. Wiley David Cargill, and Amm1c. Donald Edward Peterson..." Contributed by Terry pb4y-2@sbcglobal.net [03JAN2001]

UPDATE "...It was quite a surprise for me to find the feature in this website about the 10 July 1945 loss of PBM3 Bu#: 6545 (SEE: VP-2 Crew - In Memorium - VP-2 Crew ). One of the crewmembers, AMM3 Thomas Arthur Garner, was my older brother. I still have the Navy correspondence that includes a list of all of the crewmembers and their next of kin, but had figured that, for the most part, the incident and crew had long since been forgotten. It would be interesting to hear from anyone who was related to any of those guys...Don Garner vidoc@att.net..." [23JUL2002]

UPDATE "...My Uncle (mother's brother) was killed in WWII while a member of VPB-2 OTU-3 stationed at Banana River FL 10 July 1945. My mother was 14 at the time and knows nothing about it. Over the years I have written to every U.S. Navy record keeping facility I can think of and have ammassed a file on the subject. Navy records are very vague. Since you were there are the time, I was hoping you could fill in the blanks for me. I'll tell you what I know...

My Uncle was AOM S 1c Bernard M. ZLOTNICK. From his letters, I found that he was a bow gunner...On 9 July 1945 at 1907 hrs, PBM-3S Bu. No. 6545 took off from NAS Banana River, Florida for radar patrol over the Bahamas. The crew was as follows:

Lt.(jg) J.B. WHITE (USNR)
Ens. Wendall E. LA VOY (USNR)
Ens. Wesley E. LEWIS (USNR)
AMM3c James E. EISLEY
AMM3c Thomas A. GARNER
S1c ARM John L. HURT
S1c ARM Glen L. WINDER
S1c ARM Edward J. WYATT
AOM3c Thomas C. OLIVER
S1c AOM Gene S. BOYER
S1c AOM Bernard M. ZLOTNICK
S1c AOM Stephen WOROBECK


The aircraft gave a radio transmission of 25-22N, 77-34W at 2116 hrs 10 July 1945 and was not heard from after that. There was an extensive search for 21 days including a carrier sweep and then it was called off. As far as I know, nothing was ever found. According to what my Grandmother told me before she died, my uncle and Worobeck were good friends, having met each other in line while enlisting at Brooklyn N.Y. They went all through boot camp and AOM school in Jacksonville FL together. Thats all we know. If you remember the event or could fill in any blanks or give me some ideas for finding additional material, I'd appreciate hearing from you. Sincerely, Charles W. Crowe, Jr. cwcrowe@execpc.com..."

UPDATE "...The attached represents correspondence from the Navy to the parents of Tom Garner, lost 10 July 1945 in the Navy PBM3, in you website as "VPB2 OTU-3" Also, I understand that another aircraft, a Navy Privateer, disappeared during the search for the PBM..." Contributed by Don Garner vidoc@att.net [30JUL2002]
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Telegram ONE
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Telegram TWO
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Letter ONE
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Letter TWO
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Letter THREE
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Letter FOUR
VPB2OTU History ThumbnailCameraVPB2 OTU-3 Letter FIVE

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