This Site is dedicated to all those families of the people that have tragically disappeared on flights in and around New Zealand. I  only hope that from all the effort in building this site and from all the effort of those taking part in this venture, that it will bear fruit in bringing ‘closure’ to their memories!
Gavin Grimmer
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Late Edition Snippets to “TRACED ...yet still missing”


I have added this page as I come across information at regular intervals, and as the intention is to get all the relevant information out to you, the readers, then it would be silly to exclude it, just because it became available after the completion date.

Unfortunately, this means that the earlier editions of this book will have less up-to-date information in them than the later editions, but at least the information gets out.

All these “snippets” will no doubt not alter the general overview of my book as the facts stand for themselves!

As information of further of importance comes to light, it will be published here:



1/ In May 2009, I obtained the Logbook for Mt Cook’s Cessna 180 Skiplane ZK-BMS that covers the period from 11-12-59 to 31-10-63 and recorded in it is that this aircraft flew for 1 hour the day Chadwick disappeared. Where it flew to is a total mystery as no-one seems to remember it, but maybe it was responsible for one or more of the observations on the day.


2/ When Brian Anderson (page 55 and 56) read TRACED ...yet still missing!, he said to me that he didn’t know at the time that he did the calculations, that Ross McDermott’s parent’s TV and aerial were boosted with amplifiers (as on page 52), and now that he knows this, he said it definitely increases the possibility that it was Chadwick that Ross and his mother heard that day.

Due to the steepness of the Jacobs River Valley, there is only one area that Chadwick could have transmitted from that provided the terrain clearance needed to get the trajectory of a line of sight signal to be ducted via the inversion layer, so as to get it to travel as far as Auckland – and that is where I  believe the Dragonfly is, as shown in Chapter Seven in the book.

Between that spot and a direct line to Auckland, there is a valley that provides the angle needed for the signal to get out.


3/ I came across an article in a magazine: Aviation Safety Digest (Australian) Sept., 1967, where a aircraft that crashed was heard 7 miles away over many more ranges than that of which the women at Hunts Beach heard the supposed crash of AFB!

A 16 year old youth heard the aircraft engines very faintly running normally, then heard them suddenly roar for about a second and then heard an explosive "woofing" noise, followed by silence. His father who was with him, didn't hear the engines (meaning partly deaf) but thought the crashing noise was a tree falling. There was very little cloud at the time which meant there was not a lot for the noise to bounce off, unlike the conditions at Jacobs River/ Hunts Beach, so I now have no difficulty believing that the two independent women at Hunts Beach did actually hear the crash of AFB.


4/ The person that was on duty as the weather observer in Haast, on the day AFB went missing, said that he clearly remembers that there was thunderstorms (Cb’s) along the range at the time AFB should have come through there. He remembers it as he had always believed that these thunderstorms had been the cause of the disappearance. These thunderstorms could only have been on the Matataketake Ranges (north of Haast - Maori Saddle area) as eye witness accounts, and a photo taken at the time, showed that the weather south of Haast was fine. This confirms my belief that AFB was caught in a strong updraught and forced up into the cloud.

This may well have happened, as a result of a developing Cb, as far north as Gordon Ferguson’s position inland from Lake Moeraki -  remembering that Gordon reported hearing “an aeroplane flying high”!