F/O HENRY H. MACKENZIE RCAF - JR523 EXCAVATION
Letter from the excavation team in France
I write to give you the latest news concerning our researches.
We spent a last day of research on the scene of the crash on October 26th, 2009, because now that winter has arrived it is very difficult to work in the swamp.
We have still found numerous pieces from the cockpit and especially a very moving object the whistle which Henry wore attached to his Mae-West. Winter months will be spent cleaning the engine and the various collected pieces.
On October 30th, 2009 I had an interview with the mayor and municipal members of council. During an hour and an half I presented the results of our researches and our wish to realize a monument in memory of the pilot. The mayor agreed with me and suggested the monument be placed behind the city hall in a small park. The Typhoon's engine would be sealed on a concrete paving stone with panels explaining the events of January 3rd, 1944, the front would be also affixed with a commemorative tablet. The mayor is thus going to present the file to the City Council for a majority agreement, but we think that there will be no problem.
The mayor and the municipality will take care of the financial part and the realization of the monument. We are currently preparing the engine (cleaning, etc…..) to expose it. I think that seve ral months will be needed before this project succeeds but it seems to me that all the elements are gathered for the success of the operation.
I have attached the last photos of our researches and the engine.
On this day of November 11th marking the end of hostilities in 1918 I also have thoughts for the millions of deaths of the first world war. This conflict profoundly marked my country and particularly Picardie.