|Re: Captain Levin - Odessa
22 июля 2013, 18:52
Dear Mr. Komarovsky,
I have done some more research online with your new information. The aircraft was a Naval Aircraft Factory PBN-1 Nomad flying boat, serial number 02915. Some websites provided more information. I will quote one message board post that had a lot of information:
"Catalina 02915 11 Jan 1945, North Carolina
Whilst browsing my copy of Ocean bridge [the book he refers to is Ocean Bridge: The History of the RAF Ferry Command by Carl A. Christie] this morning (as one does!) I noticed this aircraft loss, Catalina 02915 which crashed coming out of Elizabeth City, North Carolina on 11 January 1945 (12th in the book). The appendix in Ocean Bridge lists the crew as Peter Harry Nataros, and he is listed on CWGC website and four Russian airmen, who are not named. So I popped into ancestry.com and they have death certs [certificates] for North Carolina and the names of the Russians were:
Lieutenant Afanasie Borodin
H N Chikov
Captain W M Levin
Senior Lieutenant D M Medvedev
Deaths of all five are registered at Nixonton, Pasquotank County. (All deaths dated 11th January) All the Russians are listed as being 'removed' under the field 'buried, cremated, removed'. I wonder is there a Russian cemetery they were buried in somewhere?
Foreign Aircrew and Aircraft Ireland 1939-1945
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) lists Peter Nataros as a Radio Officer in the Royal Air Force (United Kingdom) Ferry Command. He is buried in Toronto, Canada.
I also found helpful this web page: http://lend-lease.airforce.ru/english/articles/commandeur/
It would seem, from the information now available, that the PBN-1 02915 crashed while leaving Elizabeth City, NC enroute to Habbaniah, Iraq, which was the first leg of the ferry route most PBN-1s took. Radio Officer Nataros might have been on board as an English translator, and to communicate with air traffic controllers in the US and Iraq. This makes a certain amount of sense, as Iraq was under British control at the time.
Since no Americans were on board the airplane, it is unlikely that President Roosevelt would have sent a letter to Mrs. Levin. I searched files in the Map Room Papers related to the Navy (the branch that ordered, built, and operated the PBN-1) and the President's Official File on the Department of the Navy, and found no report of the loss for this airplane.
If you would like to continue your quest for information on this crash there are some other organizations you might like to contact. You can obtain the death certificates of the crew from the State of North Carolina through this website: http://vitalrecords.nc.gov/
You might also consider contacting the National Archives at College Park, Maryland, where the records of the Department of the Navy are held. They might have a report or some other record of the crash produced by the local Naval command. You can contact the National Archives at 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park MD 20740-6001; Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org; Telephone number: 301-837-3510; Fax number: 301-837-1752. If you write to the Archives, we recommend forwarding a copy of this e-mail so that they are aware of our search efforts on your behalf. You can also try contacting the National Archives of the United Kingdom for information about the RAF Ferry Command's operations in the United States and Atlantic Ocean. They might have more information on the crash, as their officer died. A helpful link for them is: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/records/research-guides/raf-op.htm#24772
I hope this information is useful to you, and I am sorry we don't have anything in our archives here that could help you. If you have any further questions, just ask.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library
4079 Albany Post Road
Hyde Park, NY 12538
On Sun, Jul 21, 2013 at 4:27 AM, Игорь Комаровский <email@example.com> wrote:
Dear Mr. Baehr,