World War II Wreck of the “Hawk of Kastellorizo”

The experienced technical scuba diver Asım Karsçakar from Turkey made some very interesting underwater photographs of an Italian World War II bomber SM-79 “Sparviero” (“Hawk”). “I dived this aircraft back in 1990 to 1992 and had the opportunity to take some photos and contact the Italian authorities regarding the identity of the aircraft”, Karsçakar said.

The aircraft wreck, according to Mr. Karsçakar,  is located at a depth of 65 to 78 metres close to the city of Kas in Turkey, in the vicinity of the Greek island of Kastellorizo. “Back in 1992 there were no digital cameras, which make the underwater photography easier today” Karsçakar told, adding: “I shot all the underwater shots of the aircraft with my Nikonos 5 camera and given the depth of the wreck and the age of the photos, they are really good.”

Karsçakar contacted the Italian authorities, notifying them about the presence of the aircraft wreck and found out more details as to its origin.

The aircraft wreck belongs to an Italian SM79 which operated from the Greek island of Rodos (under Italian occupation at the time) and was probably lost in 1943, during the Battle for the Dodecanese Islands, between the Germans and the Allies, which resulted in a German victory.

A World War II Italian bomber SM-79 "Sparviero" ("Hawk")
A World War II Italian bomber SM-79 “Sparviero” (“Hawk”)

What Karsçakar has to say about the discovery of the aircraft:

“This plane was first discovered in 1986 or 1987 by a German dive club owner in Kaş city. But he preferred to keep the secret to himself… for some years. I dived there in 1990 and then shot those pictures in 1991-1992. These are the first pictures of this aircraft wreck ever to appear. After I had this letter exchange with the Italian authorities. Now this place is a well known place for experienced and technical divers.”

Wreck SM79 5 Wreck SM79 4 Wreck SM79 3 Wreck SM79 2 Wreck SM79