Announcing Mission Marge

Mission: Marge

Follow our adventure Mission: Marge as we travel with Pacific Wreck’s Justin Taylan over 8,000 from Poplar to Papua New Guinea searching for Richard Bong’s P-38 Lightning Marge.

We will share Pacific Wreck team’s “in the field” photos and stories. 

In Search of Marge: Honoring Major Richard Ira Bong’s Legacy

Justin Taylen, of Pacific Wrecks, sifts through the chaos of his apartment, stacks of gear and supplies loom around him. Preparing for a journey that stretches back in time, Taylen’s mission is to find the wreckage of Major Richard Ira Bong’s P-38 Lightning, lost over 80 years ago on the Papua New Guinea coast.  

The object that stands out amongst his supplies—is a beautifully crafted, specifically for this trip, replica of Bong’s famed “Marge.” This model P-38 will accompany Justin on his expedition, serving as a poignant reminder of the aircraft he seeks to uncover. 

But this journey isn’t just about relics and wreckage; it’s a tribute to the man behind the legend. Major Richard Ira Bong’s story is woven into the fabric of this mission, his legacy driving every step of the way.

In the months before his deployment, Bong underwent rigorous training, honing his skills in the skies above California and Arizona. Despite his eagerness for combat, fate intervened, casting him into the role of an instructor. Bong approached this setback with characteristic resolve, recognizing it as an opportunity for further growth and mastery.

His moment arrived in April of 1942, Bong was told to report to Hamilton Field, where he was assigned to train on a P38

black and white photo of man pointing to imprint of smiling woman's face on aircraft.

 Lightning. He didn’t know it at the time, but this was the plane that would carry him to fame and make him a legend.  He was now only one step away from getting overseas and into combat where he could do what he signed up to do – help protect the country and win the war. 

As Justin and the team embark on this journey, they carry the spirit of Major Richard Bong.


 Join us as we follow along with the team’s journey into Papua New Guinea, in search of a beloved aircraft and the legacy of a WWII hero.

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