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Last B-24 1x53

In 1944, a smoking, battle-scarred B-24 Liberator bomber known as the Tulsamerican crashed into the choppy seas off the coast of Croatia, entombing three of its occupants under 100 feat of water. For years they were lost to their world—and their families. But in 2010, seventy years after the crash, the Department of Defense discovered the plane’s location and, aided by the Croatian Navy and some of the world’s leading underwater archaeologists, set to work to investigate the wreckage. Were the B-24’s truly as dangerous as the nickname “the Flying Coffin” suggested? And what does that mean for the recovery of the fallen airmen? Now, NOVA joins a team of archaeologists on a dangerous mission to recover the fallen airmen and identify their remains. They will deploy advanced technologies—like Cloud Point Mosaic mapping and the “Angel” dive safety system—and sift through tons of sediment to find fragments of bones and clothing and a gold wedding band. From the clandestine recovery of the remains, to the subsequent desalinization and dental forensics of the remains in the laboratory, the story of the Tulsamerican is a riveting and emotional. NOVA documents it all, including the moment a family hears the words they never expected to hear: “On behalf of a grateful nation…”