Switch to full style
This is the place where the majority of the warbird (aircraft that have survived military service) discussions will take place. Specialized forums may be added in the new future
Post a reply

Hester Lake, NV B-24?

Fri Oct 10, 2008 6:48 pm

Hello everyone,

I recently read an article that made reference to a B-24 crash in Nevada during WWII. The aircraft was piloted by a man named Hester. Apparently, the state named the lake after him. Does anyone out there know anything about it?


B-24 crash

Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:27 pm

There's a Hester Lake B-24 crash I know of in California that had some pretty big pieces in it at one time and was very remote. Years ago a wreck chaser had sent me some video taken of the site - very cold water but some interesting parts visible. Sierras, if memory serves. Found by a ranger who years after the war spotted an oxygen bottle floating on the lake. Plane hit a mountain peak in winter and majority of it slid back into the lake. Was told that father of dead Lib pilot had looked for the crash site for many years in vain and this lake area was named in honor of lost son. That's the lore, anyway.

Might this actually be the one you are referring to?

There's at least one more lake related B-24 accident I can recall...

That'd be Huntington Lake Lib crash in northern Calie - where the crew had set down on what they thought was a snow covered field. Instead, they'd set down on a frozen lake surface, which cracked from the weight of the B-24 and crew drowned and were subsequently recovered in the 1950s. Parts of this crash were recovered 30 years later by a rock promoter - some ended up in the Castle AFB B-24M restoration but most of it scrapped in the early 1990s in large part due to the oafish stupidity of the then- Base Commander and his drooling minions. Wanker.

Negative on Hester in NV anywhere in my archive.

Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:32 pm

Yes, that's the one. Thank you.

The article did mention the Sierra Nevada, which is probably where I got my wires crossed. It also mentioned a T-33, and one other warbird wreck.

Thanks for the information.

Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:32 pm


Double post.

B-24 crash, etc.

Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:39 pm

The Sierras had (and probably still have) a pretty good hunger for aircraft aluminum.

Hester Lake Lib is supposed to be pretty remote - multiple day hike and at high altitude. Cold but clear water - reported to be pretty cold even in the summer. Parts under water glistened like new form the video footage I saw.

I've always wanted to see this one myself... have yet to do so.

Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:30 am

I think the Hester Lake airplane is an "E" model that may have been home-based at Tonopah or Ephrata. Not sure about that, but I think I have seen a portion of the missing aircraft/aircrew report.


Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:32 am

I suppose I should have googled the subject before I opened my mouth. :roll:

Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:45 am

The Huntington Lake B-24 is B-24H # 42-7674; it crashed on 6 Dec 1943 and was found on 25 Sept 1955.

The Lake Hester B-24 is B-24E # 41-28463; it crashed on 5 Dec 1943 and was found on 29 July 1960. I think that this airplane was based at Hammer Field, CA.

B-24H # 42-7674 was lost while looking for B-24E 41-28463.

Detailed summaries of these accidents can be found on
Pages 606 and 608, Volume II


Sat Oct 11, 2008 1:02 am

You're right about the E being from Hammer, Tony.

Sun Oct 12, 2008 10:54 pm


You notice that is a DT B-24??? :)

Below is the website with a few photos of the wreck.



Sun Oct 12, 2008 11:14 pm

I never even looked the serial number up, Kevin. I just assumed it was assembled at Willow Run without doing any further research.

That reminds me of the bomb release handle that was presented to Gary during the Ol'927 rollout last year. Bob Johnson was a gunner on "Gidi Gidi Boom Boom" when they were shot down in Yugoslavia. He donated the handle to the B-24 reconfiguration. She was a B24H-15-DT, so there are some Tulsa pieces still around.

Post a reply