New search could shed light on plane's disappearance
On Oct. 31, 2019, The Daily Review published an article titled “A break in a cold case?”
The story was about a Franklin businessman named Albert Blevins who departed Patterson airport on Sunday, July 11, 1965, in a private aircraft and never came home.
A search for the missing man and his plane was carried out, but nothing was ever found.
However, a new search may be happening thanks to a memory Brian Carter of Morgan City had while reading through his Facebook feed.
Carter saw a post on Oct. 23, 2019, on a Facebook page called “THE WAY IT WAS…Franklin, La.” that was displaying the St. Mary and Franklin Banner-Tribune articles about the disappearance of Blevins and it brought up a memory from when he was a child.
Carter remembered being in a boat when he was around 4 or 5 years old with his parents and the weather got bad. He has a memory of seeing a plane fly over that was struck by lightning and crashed in the Atchafalaya Basin.
His parents never reported the incident in 1965, but in 2019, Carter went to the St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office with the memory and a map his father drew of the location.
The St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office went with Carter to the location and Carter came into The Daily Review newsroom to share his story.
The story in The Daily Review was seen by Ralph W. Baird in Houston, who began his own research.
Baird sent an email to The Daily Review stating that he is “advising a team that is preparing a search plan to locate the loved one to add closure to family and friends.”
According to Baird, the aircraft was a single engine 1950 model Beechcraft Bonanza B35, tail number N5024C and serial number D-2286. Its engine was an E-185-8, weighing 325 pounds.
“In 1965 we did not have all the tools to fly by that we have today. The recent information (from Carter) appears to be credible and worth a detailed search of the proposed search area,” Baird said.
According to Baird, the search will be conducted with Texas EquuSearch who is collecting information and permissions to search the area. “Remote sensing equipment will be used that can detect underground (buried) anomalies,” Baird said.
According to Tim Miller, founder and director of Texas EquuSearch, “We are going to bring in some equipment probably around June when and if the river goes down and make an attempt to see if we can get it located. We know chances are slim, but we will give it a try.”