- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 6, 2015

HIAWATHA, Iowa (AP) - A World War II veteran from Cedar Rapids believes wreckage of a plane recently found by a fisherman in France belongs to a B-17 bomber he was aboard when it crashed more than 70 years ago.

Joe Koenig’s plane crashed in 1944 after being shot down by a German fighter during an air raid in the Bordeaux region of France, television station KCRG (https://bit.ly/1AES7QE ) reported. All of the 10-member crew survived the crash, and 92-year-old Koenig said the plane ended up about 75 yards off the Bay of Biscay.

A French newspaper in March reported a fisherman found large pieces of a WWII bomber during low tide in the bay. The fisherman, Gerard Bunoust, photographed the plane parts, including a wing, engine and landing.

He notified Koenig’s relatives about the wreckage while researching what could have happened to its crew. He told the family he has marked the exact location of the wreckage with GPS coordinates so it could be found later since it’s now covered by sand.

Koenig’s family has notified the military about the wreckage and is considering traveling to France to view it themselves.

“I sure would like to know what happened,” Koenig said. “To me, it has to be the plane because I can’t imagine another going through the exact conditions we did in the exact same spot.”


Information from: KCRG-TV, https://www.kcrg.com

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