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Amelia Earhart: new clue?

Danielle Adams

Amelia Earhart with navigator Fred Noonan

Photo may show wreckage of plane

Amelia Earhart went missing without a trace over the South Pacific 75 years ago, and her disappearance has never been solved. A photograph that was taken just three months after Earhart disappeared might be a new clue in the search for the American aviator.

Enhanced analysis of the photograph shows what experts believe may be the landing gear of Amelia Earhart’s aircraft protruding from the waters off the remote island of Nikumaroro.

Ric Gillespie, executive director of the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, will lead a 10-day search in July. A team of scientists and salvagers will use state-of-the-art underwater robotic submarines and mapping equipment to search for the wreckage of the plane and perhaps even the remains of the Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan. Gillespie said the island is the same island where a series of distress calls were detected after Amelia Earhart disappeared. 

Amelia Earhart began her attempt to navigate the globe in Oakland, CA in May 1937. She stopped in Miami, and flew over South America, the Atlantic, Africa, India, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Guinea, with stops along the way. On July 2, she stopped in Howard to Island to re-fuel before her final leg to the United States. She never made it. Amelia Earhart’s disappearance has been one of the 20th century’s most enduring and fascinating mysteries.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said that Amelia Earhart, an inspiration to Americans in the difficult time of the Great Depression, should be a model for the country now. “After a long decade of war, terrorism and recession, there are some who are asking whether we still have what it takes to lead, and like that earlier generation we too could use some of Amelia’s spirit.” She said at a State Department event. “We can be as optimistic and even audacious as Amelia Earhart,” she said. “We can be defined not by the limits that hold us down but by the opportunities that are ahead.”

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