Pacific Ocean, HI, CA Airliner Goes Down In Ocean, Nov 1957

A Pan Am Stratocruiser identical to Flight 7.

The passengers:

Hawaii bound:
ROBERT ALEXANDER and his wife MARGARET, and children JUDY and DAVID, all of Los Altos.
MRS. MARIAN BARBER, Shaker Heights, Ohio.
FRED CHOY, San Mateo.
EDWARD ELLIS, Hillsboro.
WILL HAGAN and NORMA HAGEN (address unknown).
ROBERT HOLLIDAY, New South Wales, Australia.
JOSEPH JONES, Kailua, Oahu.
LOUIS RODRIGUES, 53, San Francisco.
HELEN ROWLAND, 60, Palo Alto.

Tokyo bound:
TOMIKO BOYD, Baltimore, Ohio.
H. LEE CLACK, his wife, ANNA, and their children, SCOTT, NANCY, KIMI, and BRUCE all of Midland, Mich.
Lieutenant Commander GORDON COLE, Alexandria, Va.
WILLIAM DECK, Roanoke, Va.
MELIH DURAL, address unknown.
SOLEDAD MERCADO, address unknown.
RUBY QUONG, San Francisco.
PHILIP SULLIVAN and his wife, BESS, of Alexandria, Va.
Rangoon bound:
THOMAS McGRAIL, West Roxbury, Mass.

The Fresno Bee and Republican California 1957-11-09



Honolulu -- UP -- Planes and ships are combined in a gigantic search for a Pan American airliner which disappeared Friday night on a flight from San Francisco to Honolulu.
The plane, a double decked luxury craft carrying 44 persons, checked in at the "point of no return" with a routine radio message and has not been heard from since.
Pursue Blast Theory.
The possibility the plane had exploded in the air is being explored here by navy and coast guard officials. They said the lack of radio contact with the plane and the lack of any distress signal were considered significant factors in the explosion theory.

"There are many theories to be explored in the sudden and mysterious disappearance of a huge plant," Captain SAM READ, chief press information officer at Pearl Harbor said, "However the explosion theory is receiving priority."
Commander WILLIAM E. CHAPLINE, chief of the coast guard search and rescue section said there was a "potent possibility" that the missing aircraft "suddenly and for an unknown reason went out of control." He declined to speculate as to whether the plane actually exploded, but said a sudden and complete loss of power was a "very remote possibility."

100,000 Square Mile Hunt.
Dozens of aircraft from the navy, coast guard and commercial air lines were criss crossing a 100,000 square mile area of the Pacific in perfect weather seeking clues to the fate of the big craft while at least 14 surface vessels and two navy submarines were hunting on the surface.
In addition air-sea rescue headquarters called in the air craft carrier Philippine Sea from Long Beach, Calif., to add its planes and helicopters to the search.
There were two reports of sighting "unidentified objects" near the midway point of the plane's flight. The first referred to "yellow objects" but the navy said later the sighting "may be" disposable jet fuel tanks and the coast guard said that the reports indicated that if the objects were life rafts, they were "uninflated."
Later a navy search plane reported sighting an "unidentified object" some 90 miles southeast of the "point of no return."

Pan American officials said they had notified the federal bureau of investigation of the plane's disappearance but that was "routine in case of anything unusual."
The FBI said it would not investigate unless "there is some evidence of crime."
Insurance officials also were checking the passenger list to determine whether there had been any unusual purchase of insurance on any of the 36 passengers or eight crewmen aboard.

The Fresno Bee and Republican Californis 1957-11-10



Boeing 377

Unlike it's military sister the KC-97, the 377 had many reliability issues. Of the 50 built, ten were lost in accidents, giving it a 20% mortality rate. The last intact survivor I saw( which was reportedly scrapped later) was in 1987 in a storage area at Tucson (Arizona) International Airport. So sad--people would have loved to see a piece of history like that flying in air shows.
A picture of this plane does exist, along side a 1952 Buick, taken that year which I have seen from time to time in propliner related magazines.