On January 11, 1935, Amelia Earhart became the first person to fly solo across the Pacific, traveling from Honolulu to Oakland, Calif. But in her larger quest to traverse the globe, she vanished forever.
Tomorrow, a day after the 75th anniversary of Earhart's disappearance during an around-the-world flight attempt, The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGAR) is launching a high-tech deep water expedition -- Niku VII -- to search for her aircraft, the Earhart Electra, in the waters adjacent to Nikumaroro in the Republic of Kiribati.
On June 1, 1937, Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan departed from Miami and began the 29,000-mile journey. By June 29, when they landed in Lae, New Guinea, all but 7,000 miles of the planned journey had been completed.
The final radio transmission came through on July 2, 1937: "We are running north and south." Earhart and Noonan were never heard from again.
A rescue attempt commenced immediately and became what was then the most extensive air and sea search in naval history. On July 19, 1937, after spending $4 million and scouring 250,000 square miles of ocean, the U.S. government called off the operation.