Six Mysteries of the Bermuda Triangle

Mysterious disappearances have plagued the tropical triangle for centuries.

ByLEE FERRAN via logo
March 24, 2009, 6:24 PM

March 25, 2009 — -- Miami, Puerto Rico and Bermuda are separately some of the most sought-after vacation spots in the world.

But together, lines between them make up the approximate boundary of one of the most mysterious and deadly areas on the planet: the Bermuda Triangle.

Ever since Christopher Columbus sailed through the region in 1492, some weird, unexplained stuff has taken place over the Atlantic Ocean there.

Everything from bad weather to supernatural forces have been blamed for several high profile disappearances.

Here are just a few of the tales that deliver more questions than answers.

1945: Bomber Squad Disappears, So Do Rescuers

Although it was not the first unexplained occurrence in the area, many say that what happened to a bomber squadron in December 1945 sparked the legend of the Bermuda Triangle.

The five-plane squadron, Flight 19, with 27 men, set out on a training mission from their base in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and never returned.

According to the Navy's report of the accident, the disappearance was due to "causes or reasons unknown."

Staff Sgt. Howell O. Thompson, pictured above, was a member of the crew of the now infamous Flight 19.

A rescue mission of 13 men was sent to search for Flight 19, but those men, too, never returned.

1918: U.S. Battleship Goes Missing With 306 on Board

The USS Cyclops was a collier that operated between the East Coast and the Caribbean, servicing the Atlantic fleet for a time and then ran trans-Atlantic journeys until February 1918.

After fueling British ships in the south Atlantic in Brazilian waters, the ship embarked from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Feb. 16, 1918, came into Barbados in early March and then promptly disappeared completely.

The 306 crew and passengers were never heard from again and, while there are many theories, according to the Naval Historical Center, it "is one of the sea's unsolved mysteries."

1948: DC-3 Commercial Flight Vanishes

On Dec. 28, 1948, Capt. Robert Lindquist took off from San Juan with two crew members and 29 passengers heading for Miami.

When the plane was 50 miles away from Miami, Lindquist reportedly radioed the Miami airport for landing instructions. The airport's reply was met with silence. The plane was never seen again.

According to an investigation by the Civil Aeronautics Board, the plane had electrical difficulties and low battery power. Those findings have not stopped many from blaming supernatural forces on the disappearance.

1976: Panamanian Ship Trades Cargo for Mystery

The Panamanian ship Sylvia L. Ossa was a cargo ship that was a regular near the mysterious waters of the Bermuda Triangle.

But in 1976, the Sylvia L. Ossa fell victim to the mysteries of the triangle when she and her 37-person crew disappeared without a trace.

The Coast Guard is reportedly still looking for clues to what happened to the 590-foot ship, pictured above.

1948: Star Tiger Drops Out of the Sky

On its way from England to Bermuda in January 1948, a Star Tiger passenger plane vanished with more than 30 people on board.

England's Civial Air Ministry conducted an investigation and found that a ship, the SS Troubadour, reported seeing a low-flying plane about halfway between Bermuda and Delaware Bay. If that plane was the Star Tiger, it was horribly off course.

The fate of the Star Tiger is still considered an unsolved mystery.

1963: Something Smells Funny With the Sulphur Queen's Disappearance

The Sulphur Queen was a 523-foot tanker that was originally intended to carry oil, but was converted to carry sulphur.

On Feb. 3, 1963, the ship sent a radio report that placed it 230 miles southeast of New Orleans, La., according to a report by Time magazine. Then nothing.

There was no SOS and no warning of trouble. The ship simply disappeared.

Two weeks later, pieces of a raft, a life vest and a broken oar washed up on Florida beaches.

An investigation launched by the Coast Guard shortly after the disappearance concluded that the vessel was nowhere near seaworthy and likely caught fire at sea.

Such a conclusion was not far-fetched. According to the article, "once, the Queen actually sailed into a New Jersey port with fires smoldering, unloaded her cargo, and sailed off again -- still burning."

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