Not less than a year ago, around the month of Aug’19, a search, sponsored by the National Geographic, was initiated. They hire a famed explorer by the name Robert Ballard, a retired US Navy officer and a professor of oceanography at the University of Rhode Island. His niche expertise in underwater archaeology plus his access to the most advanced technology and the most envied Exploration vessel (E/v) Nautilus has enabled him to reach depths to an ocean not accessible to every mortal. He discovered some of the missing gems in history like the Titanic shipwreck, the German battleship Bismarck and many other shipwrecks in the world. National Geography wanted him this time, to find answers or missing pieces to help answer the most mysterious disappearance of all time – AMELIA EARHART!
Just to shed some light as to how crucial this search was, it was this world’s second attempt to find Amelia. Yes, you read correctly! This first search was conducted way back in 1937. And before we jump into the conclusions of these attempts, let’s know who Amelia was, in order to understand why the world was so desperate to find her. Amelia hailed from an era that had survived the First World war; an era that had witnessed inventions like the Vacuum cleaner, the Air conditioner, Plastic and the most important one that relates specifically to this blog and to Amelia: THE AEROPLANE! A 10-minute plane ride at the Long Beach air show in California in 1920 was all that took Amelia Earhart to realize the purpose of her life. She was under a tight grip of exhilaration. She never felt so alive. That heavy concoction of adrenalin rush and excitement, made her want to (wo)man that vessel from that very moment. Who’d guess that a 10 min plane ride would change the course of history and HOW!
In an era when women barely made an attempt to drive cars, we had one who dared to not only fly a plane but also dared to fly it across the globe. It was a time where every fiber of this world was heavily composed of elements of the patriarch and yet she still managed to obliterate through it and magnify her presence. She challenged every record set by her male counterpart. Whether it was flying solo across the Atlantic or whether it was flying across the Pacific, she didn’t feel out of place and not one bit doubtful of her attempts just because she was a woman.
Little did she realize that her daring venture across the globe would be her last and would go on to haunt the best of researchers and explorers till date. Heavens only knew where she disappeared into: did she get swallowed by the mighty Pacific or did she fly into oblivion or did she crash land on some remote land and choose to live as an outcast? Not that the world didn’t take an interest in finding her. Such was her stature and such was the global focus on her globetrotting venture that her initial search took nothing less than 66 aircraft, 9 ships and a whopping $4 million rescue authorized by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. These questions remain unanswered even by Robert Ballard. Even his mighty Nautilus failed to locate the remains of the Electra that Amelia used on her last venture.
It’s not that Amelia’s team was the first to globetrot through a plane. It was done before, but it took 8 US army service pilots and 4 planes to achieve the same. And Amelia was planning to do all of this with just half the crew and 1 plane. Was she ill-prepared for this feat? Who were the other 3 members of the team and were they skilled enough to carry this mission? Some said she couldn’t have asked for a better entourage. The plane she flew too was one of the best – A Lockheed Electra! More advanced than the planes flown by the US army. It’s also said that she managed to cover more than 75% of the estimated miles. Then what could possibly go wrong after inching so close? Want to unravel this mystery with me? I could give you a detailed account of the events that transpired right from the start of this expedition. Give me a shout-out in case you cant withstand the suspense anymore. And I ‘ll have you a trip arranged where you will fly with me and Amelia’s squad, whilst bearing witness to her last trip.