A Catalina Aircraft. Picture: Supplied
A Catalina Aircraft. Picture: Supplied LAC Leigh Cameron

Plane crash wreck near Cairns confirmed as 1943 Catalina

THE Royal Australian Air Force has confirmed aircraft wreckage found in waters near Cairns belongs to RAAF Number 11 Squadron Catalina A24-25.

The plane crashed on February 28, 1943, killing all 11 on board.

Cairns diver Kevin Coombs discovered the wreckage about 56km south of Cairns in 35m of water in 2013.

An inquiry conducted soon after the loss concluded the aircraft crashed at sea while coming in to land because it was running out of fuel.

There were no witnesses and no sightings of wreckage or crew during subsequent searches.

The Air Force intends to leave the aircraft where it lies as a mark of respect to the crew whose remains are likely to be entombed in the wreckage.

A memorial service will be held in Cairns early next year.

- APN NEWSDESK.


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