On September 14, 1944, during WWII a PB2Y-3 Coronado’ nicknamed 'Gunga Din' was practicing landings at Kwajalein Atoll, Marshall Islands in the Pacific near the seaplane base at Ebeye Island, when the plane crashed and broke in half directly behind the wing.
The two sections of the plane floated on the water for about 30 minutes before sinking. There were 13 people on board, and all survived except one.
Fred M. Matson, PhM1c, USNR, was in the forward bunking compartment in the nose of the plane. The section Matson was trapped in was about 15 feet below the surface, and several attempts were made to dive down and extricate him before the front half of the plane sank. These efforts were to no avail.
In 2007 a side-scan sonar survey was conducted by Bill Remick in the area the plane is believed to have sunk in, but nothing was found.
The tail section of the plane was located on side-scan sonar on August 7, 2015, and team members dived it on August 9 and 10. The front half of the plane has not been found yet and we will continue to search until we can bring them all home.