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Bob Dempster

Seattle World Cruiser

300 Airport Way Ste 203

Renton, WA 98057

 

9401-9947 Airport Way S
Seattle, WA, 98108
United States

April 24th

April 24th

Daily Flight Information:

The World Flight airplanes "Chicago", "Boston", & "New Orleans" will remain in Dutch Harbor until "Seattle" is repaired at Kanatak, Alaska and catches up with the team.

"Seattle" Ready to Leave Kanatak
Waiting for Good Weather

At Kanatak, Alaska - Daily Report

by Maj. F.L. Martin Commanding

We awakened at 3:30 this morning in preparation for leaving in case the weather permitted, but the wind made the water in the bay too rough. Mr Anderson, in charge of the longshoremen, reported at 4 o'clock their experiences of the night but stated that everything was now safe. Having worked with them for several days, we had explicit confidence in this report and again went to sleep. We awakened at 8:00 a.m. to find the plane completely surrounded by ice. Work was started immediately to break the ice and float it out of the creek to the bay.

We were afraid that the wind would force the pontoons against the edge of the ice and crush them as the tops of the pontoons are covered with three-ply veneer and were very thin and weak. Upon examination, it was found that the ice in the immediate vicinity of the pontoons, due to the efforts of the longshoremen during the night, was a mushy ice which had prevented their being injured. It was decided that with the first calm weather, skids would be placed under the pontoons and an effort made to drag the plane down the creek to the bay, getting very much discouraged waiting for an opportunity to take the plane out on a high tide when it was sufficiently calm to take-off.

On the afternoon of the 24th, we made a housing for the pontoons of two inch by twelve inch planks, which would protect the pontoons from being injured by the ice.


Daily Report

by Lt. LP Arnold "Chicago" Mechanic

Thursday was a really decent day -- fairly warm & clear until late in the afternoon. Everyone was busy around their own particular plane and by nightfall all were in readiness to resume the journey at anytime.

Thursday being a nice day meant Friday should be unusually bad & it sure was. All day it rained or snowed, and all day the "woolies" tore around. A "woolie," or williwaw as sometimes it is called, is a sudden gust of wind of great velocity that comes from most any direction at the most unexpected times and for no apparent reason. Some of today's gusts upset rowboats, picked up sheets of water from the surface & took them down the bay, blew boards & planks from the dock & was generally obnoxious. When walking along they strike you so suddenly & with such force that one can easily be upset.

Tonight for the first time we all sat around the Ward Room on the Haida talking, watching the movies, and being sociable. About ten we were just starting for home when the beach guard came in with the information that the planes were floating & drifting around. Of course we all rushed out & found that the tide was exceedingly high so that the planes on the runways had been just afloat. Then along came a "woolie" and blown them off the runways, so that the planes & planks were all floating around together.

No damage was done however, the crew was called out, temporary runways made and the planes pulled up higher onto the beach. This took until after twelve and two hours of working out on the beach in & around the water, a heavy snow falling, the woolies tearing around, & the temperature ten or twelve below freezing, was anything but pleasant & I guess everyone was thoroughly chilled when it was over with. When I came in my hands were so cold that I couldn't unbutton my coat. I've heard of "bad weather" many times but unless a person has been in Unalaska in April they haven't seen anything at all.

 
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