WarbirdsNews has learned that the wreck of a Soviet Douglas A-20 Havoc recently re-emerged in the Taiga of western Siberia in Russia. Apparently the lend-lease medium bomber, one of roughly 3400 of the type given to the Soviet Union, went down on its ferry flight from Alaska to the Eastern Front in 1943. The Taiga is a vast boreal forest which is largely uninhabited, and buried under snow and ice for much of the year. Although no photographs have surfaced publicly as of yet, the aircraft (technically designated a DB-7) apparently went down on the slopes of Zelyonaya mountain in the Kemerovo region. Sadly, it appears that the un-named Soviet ferry crew perished in the wartime crash. The aircraft’s serial number is not known currently, but the fuselage bears the markings “F216”, so finding its true identity should not pose too great a problem for researchers.
Interestingly, a hunter first stumbled across the wreck in 1966, but although he tried to lead authorities to the site, he failed to remember exactly where he’d found it. The aircraft faded from memory for forty-eight years until officers from the Kuznetsky Alatau wildlife reserve located her during one of their excursions. Quite what will happen now is not public knowledge, but hopefully a recovery team will locate and identify the crew’s remains for proper burial. Given the remoteness of the location, the wreck seems likely to stay where it is for the meantime though. WarbirdsNews will continue to monitor this story, and report back if any new details, or photographs emerge.