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Mountaineers Launch Mission To Recover Lost World War II Soldiers

In this 1942 photo released by the U.S. Coast Guard, Lt. John A. Pritchard, Jr., and Petty Officer 1st Class Benjamin Bottoms prepare for a flight over the Greenland icebergs where they had successfully rescued two U.S. Army fliers. Pritchard and Bottoms died in an attempt to rescue a third man left stranded by the crash of a B-17 on an ice cap in 1942 when their single-engine plane went down in whiteout conditions. (AP Photo/U.S. Coast Guard)
In this 1942 photo released by the U.S. Coast Guard, Lt. John A. Pritchard, Jr., and Petty Officer 1st Class Benjamin Bottoms prepare for a flight over the Greenland icebergs where they had successfully rescued two U.S. Army fliers. Pritchard and Bottoms died in an attempt to rescue a third man left stranded by the crash of a B-17 on an ice cap in 1942 when their single-engine plane went down in whiteout conditions. (AP Photo/U.S. Coast Guard)

Just after the United States entered World War II in 1942, a military cargo plane crashed in Greenland, stranding the crew on an ice cap in one of the most remote locations on Earth.

Four days later a rescue crew went after them in a B-17 bomber, but that plane also crashed, marooning nine more men in Greenland. A second rescue plane sent by the Coast Guard reached the crew of the B-17, but they disappeared in a storm with three people on board.

The military airplane dropped supplies to the remaining crew until they were rescued about six months later, but the three men lost in the storm were never heard from again. Now, 74 years later, a privately funded group called Global Exploration and Recovery is heading to Greenland in search of the three remaining men.

John Bradley, the company’s president, joins Here & Now‘s Robin Young for a debrief on their upcoming mission to Greenland.

Guest

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