The sudden, recent disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 and its 239 people on board, brings into attention thrilling stories about world’s greatest aviation mysteries.
In 1946, a plane that departed Rio de Janeiro heading for the Cuban capital of Havana, disappeared after take-off. The mysterious disappearance was reported and the case was closed after local authorities failed to find the airliner. The puzzling disappearance rocked the world again as the plane landed 47 years later in December 1993, not in Havana but at the airport of Bogota, Colombia.
36 human skeletons, warm coffee cups, lit cigarettes Old Gold brand and newspapers dated 21.09.1946 and whose ink smelled as they had been printed out the day before, all these “things” were found on board the ghost aircraft of type Lockheed Constellation L-049/149.
This case ranks as one of the greatest mysteries in aviation history. No one can explain how the plane disappeared in 1946, reappeared in 1993 and managed to make a perfect landing on an airport runway having only skeletons aboard.
Herman Guevara was the leader of a very large group of scientists whose mission was to shed light on the mystery. In turn, the stunned investigator, said he could not explain what happened and how it was possible for an airplane to land without any living crew member on board.
“The only thing I can tell you is that the plane took off at the airport in Rio de Janeiro on September 21, 1946 and went missing during its flight. Over 47 years, the same plane lands at another airport in South America, and no one can explain what happened meantime. How a plane carrying only skeletons on board made the landing, only God knows! The 36 passengers including crew of four took off after all regulations,” said the aviation expert shortly after investigation.
The incredible story began when an unknown aircraft with a very old inscription, Panair Do Brasil, came out of nowhere and began landing maneuvers at Bogota airport in Colombia. The airport staff tried in vain to prevent the unknown plane from landing because a BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation) was preparing to land at the same time on the same runway. Thanks to the skillful maneuvering of 54-old-year Captain Anthony Bollard, the British airliner was able to avoid a fatal collision in split second.
[As for Panair do Brasil (or simply "Panair"), you need to know that it was a Brazilian airline that operated between 1929 and 1965 and from 1946 to 1965 was considered to be the largest carrier not only in Brazil but in all of Latin America. It currently exists as a non-operating company.]
The main question all experts tried to answer was: “Where was the phantom plane all those years?”. Initially it was thought that the aircraft entered a time gap which made it fail to return for so long, but according to this theory, people were expected to remain alive. Because the passengers died, that pushed researchers believe SF hypothesis such that the plane made contact with aliens, who allegedly killed the people. Once the “job” was done, they diverted the plane for landing to random airport in South America. It is highly presumed that aliens hold highly advanced technologies that allow them to perform complex operations.
Controversy: When checking out the history record of Panair do Brasil company, there is no report of missing flight on 21 September 1946. However, company’s accidents and incidents list reveals a deadly crash that happened just 6 days after the suspected Rio-Havana flight. According to Wikipedia, on 27 September 1946, a Douglas DC-3-228D registration PP-PCH flying from Belo Horizonte-Pampulha to Rio de Janeiro-Santos Dumont crashed into a mountain near the location of Alto Rio Doce near Barbacena probably due to bad weather. All 25 passengers and crew died.
Other mystery disappearances across the years:
1962: Flying Tiger Line: Lockheed L-1049H Super Constellation propeller crashed with 107 aboard in western Pacific and was never found.
1990: Faucett Airlines: Peruvian airline Boeing 727 bound for Miami crashed into the North Atlantic after running out of fuel. 18 airline employees and relatives were killed and the wreckage was never recovered.
1995: Merpati Nusantara Airlines: Indonesian flight vanished over water while flying between islands in the archipelago country. De Havilland Twin Otter 300 with 14 people aboard was never retrieved.
2007: Adam Air: Boeing 737 operated by the Indonesian airliner with 102 on board went missing on 1 January 2007. Some “rubbish” from plane was found days after crash, and flight-data and cockpit recorders were recovered after 9 months. Aircraft’s body still lying on the ocean bottom.
2009: Air France: Flight 447 Drama: A long-range wide-body Airbus A330 passenger jet crash over Southern Atlantic as it entered a storm on its way from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. Debris was found after 3 days but it was needed 2 years to recover the main wreckage including black boxes and bodies from the floor of the Atlantic Ocean. All 228 people on board died in the accident.