Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean, a feat that was unimaginable at the time. Later, she decided to circumnavigate the globe in her two-engine Lockheed Electra with her navigator Fred Noonan when the tragedy took place. It was in 1937 when her plane is believed to have crashed over the Pacific Ocean which caused her death. The aviation world was struck when the news of her frantic death was unveiled. Earhart has been a part of many conspiracies and theories regarding her disappearance and death. Fast-forward to 2018, studies show that the skeleton that was found on Gardner Island in 1941 was of Amelia Earhart. The results are totally different since earlier forensic analysis showed contradictory results.
Per a conspiracy on her death, it is believed that she crash-landed on an island where she was in castaway until she died of isolation and other agents. The bones which were the prime suspect for decades were unearthed a team set up on a British expedition to explore settlements at the Gardner Island which is now known as Nikumaroro. Professor Richard Jantz at the University of Tennessee stated that the British team discovered the bones along with a host of other things like a woman’s shoe. They also found a box which contained a bottle of Benedictine liqueur and a Brandis navy surveying sextant made in 1918 which is assumed as the belongings of the late Amelia Earhart. Following the discovery and the forensic analysis that followed, the researchers discarded or destroyed the bones remains.
Talking about the bones found by the British expedition, total 13 bones were shipped to Fiji where Dr. DW Hoodles of the Central Medical School studied the bones to derive a conclusion. Prof Jantz blames the inaccurate instruments at the time that produced different results suggesting that the bones were of a man. Professor Richard Jantz started his own project to learn if the bones originally belonged to a man as said or it was of Amelia Earhart.
Jantz developed a program called Fordisc which takes input as measurements and produces the sex, ancestry, and other vital measurements which are now used by modern forensic anthropologists. He compared the measurements obtained by Dr. DW Hoodles with respect to the remains’ limb lengths, build, weight, height, and compared it with the vital information available on her driving license and pilot license and other records including her photographs. According to the data derived from his study, he found that the bones found in 1941 resemble Earhart and that it is approximately 99% similar to large reference samples. The bones commonly referred to as Nikumaroro bones belong to Earhart, he says after undergoing extensive research on his part.
Mike Campbell, a retired journalist and author of ‘Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last’ argued that Fred and Amelia were captured by Japanese in the Marshall Islands where they were misunderstood as American spies. They both were tortured and they died in the custody. On the flip side, director of the International Group of Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) maintains that the bones found at the Nikumaroro island belong to Earhart. Several research studies have been conducted on the aviation tycoon since her mysterious death. Dr. DW Hoodles who carried a forensic study on the bones stated that the bones belonged to a woman of European descent with a taller-than-average stature at 5ft 7in or 5ft 8in which is similar to that of Earhart.
Another member of TIGHAR, Mr. Glickman stated that when he studied about the medical notes that were 76-years-old, he made his conclusion very clear that the bones belong to Amelia and that she died on Nikumaroro, probably after a plane crash. In an attempt to find some clue, researchers set on an expedition in June 2017 where they took dogs that were trained to find human decay remains, however, there was no clue at all. Soon after the expedition, a photo of Fred and Amelia surfaced in a newspaper after their disappearance showing their location as Jaluit Harbour, Marshall Islands.