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Finder of potential game-changing Earhart pix tells story

Associated Press logo Associated Press 7/6/2017 By RANDY HERSCHAFT and MARK KENNEDY, Associated Press
This undated photo discovered in the U.S. National Archives by Les Kinney shows people on a dock in Jaluit Atoll, Marshall Islands. A new documentary film proposes that this image shows aviator Amelia Earhart, seated third from right, gazing at what may be her crippled aircraft loaded on a barge. The documentary "Amelia Earhart: The Lost Evidence," which airs Sunday, July 9, 2017, on the History channel, argues that Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan, crash-landed in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands, were picked up by Japanese military and that Earhart was taken prisoner. (Office of Naval Intelligence/U.S. National Archives via AP) © The Associated Press This undated photo discovered in the U.S. National Archives by Les Kinney shows people on a dock in Jaluit Atoll, Marshall Islands. A new documentary film proposes that this image shows aviator Amelia Earhart, seated third from right, gazing at what may be her crippled aircraft loaded on a barge. The documentary "Amelia Earhart: The Lost Evidence," which airs Sunday, July 9, 2017, on the History channel, argues that Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan, crash-landed in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands, were picked up by Japanese military and that Earhart was taken prisoner. (Office of Naval Intelligence/U.S. National Archives via AP)

NEW YORK (AP) — The retired federal agent who discovered what he believes is the first photographic evidence of Amelia Earhart alive after crash-landing in the Pacific Ocean during her attempted round-the-world flight didn't capture the significance of the image until years later.

FILE - In this file photo taken on or about July 2, 1937, American aviator Amelia Earhart, left, and her navigator, Fred Noonan, right, pose beside their plane with gold miner F.C. Jacobs at Lae, New Guinea just before Earhart and Noonan took off in a flight to Howland Island on July 2, during which they disappeared somewhere in the Pacific. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this file photo taken on or about July 2, 1937, American aviator Amelia Earhart, left, and her navigator, Fred Noonan, right, pose beside their plane with gold miner F.C. Jacobs at Lae, New Guinea just before Earhart and Noonan took off in a flight to Howland Island on July 2, during which they disappeared somewhere in the Pacific. (AP Photo, File)

The black-and-white photo is of a group of people standing on a dock on an atoll in the Marshall Islands, including one of which who seems to be a slim woman with her back to the camera.

FILE - In this June 6, 1937, file photo, Amelia Earhart, the American airwoman who is flying round the world for fun, arrived at Port Natal, Brazil, and took off on her 2,240-mile flight across the South Atlantic to Dakar, Africa. A new documentary "Amelia Earhart: The Lost Evidence," which airs Sunday, July 9, 2017, on the History channel, proposes Earhart didn't die without a trace 80 years ago. Instead, the film argues that she and her navigator Fred Noonan crash-landed in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands, were picked up by Japanese military and that Earhart was taken prisoner. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this June 6, 1937, file photo, Amelia Earhart, the American airwoman who is flying round the world for fun, arrived at Port Natal, Brazil, and took off on her 2,240-mile flight across the South Atlantic to Dakar, Africa. A new documentary "Amelia Earhart: The Lost Evidence," which airs Sunday, July 9, 2017, on the History channel, proposes Earhart didn't die without a trace 80 years ago. Instead, the film argues that she and her navigator Fred Noonan crash-landed in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands, were picked up by Japanese military and that Earhart was taken prisoner. (AP Photo, File)

A documentary airing this weekend on the History channel claims the figure is Earhart.

Retired U.S. Treasury Agent Les Kinney says he found it in 2012 in a box but "didn't really look at it carefully." In 2015, he took another pass. "I looked at it and I went, 'I can't believe this!'"

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