Chester County Man Investigating Amelia Earhart’s Disappearance Shares Thoughts on New Information

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Lockheed Electra airplane
Image via iStock.
Ric Gillespie, a Chester County man who has been investigating Earhart's disappearance for decades, is skeptical about new information. Pictured here is the model of her airplane, a Lockheed Electra.

Ric Gillespie, a Chester County resident and head of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), has been investigating Amelia Earhart’s airplane crash in the South Pacific for 36 years, writes Bo Koltnow for the WFMZ 69 News.

Now a new sonar picture has brought fresh attention to the search for her plane, but Gillespie is not convinced they depict anything useful.

“I know what sonar images of airplanes look like and they don’t look like this,” he said.

Gillespie believes Earhart landed at what was then Gardiners Island in 1937, now Nikumaroro Island. The new picture was taken about 400 miles from there.

Even if the image does depict a plane, explained Gillespie, the wings cannot be of Earhart’s Lockheed Electra, as the surf and rocks of the Island would have long ago destroyed the plane.

“People have been dreaming of an image of Amelia Earhart’s airplane on the bottom of the ocean for generations,” he said. “I’m afraid the plane’s gone.”

Gillespie is currently working on a book, One More Good Flight, which includes what he believes is evidence of Earhart landing on Nikumaroro, including radio distress calls from the island days after the crash.

Read more about Ric Gillespie at WFMZ 69 News.

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