This is my 100th post on this blog about 23 Squadron. It all started in April 2010 when I wanted to pay homage to this pilot.
Eugene Gagnon’s logbook was put in the garbage by his sister after Eugene died in 1947. His war medals including a DFC were also “disposed” of…
This is not Flight Lieutenant Eugene Gagnon’s logbook.
Courtesy Al Bowie
Eugene Gagnon was buried with full military honours in 1947, then the people of Bromptonville slowly forgot all about him.
Except two people.
Eugene Gagnon’s nephew who had many pictures and shared them with me… like this one of his uncle taken in 1941 when he was learning to fly.
Courtesy Jacques Gagnon
And Marcel Bergeron, a 84 year-old man, who wanted to keep Eugene’s memory alive.
Marcel Bergeron contacted me back in 2010 and he wanted my help to learn more about Eugene’s war years.
Courtesy Marcel Bergeron
This is Marcel Bergeron who was 20 at the time at the scene of the plane crash.
Eugene Gagnon died on October 21, 1947 when a Sherbrooke Airways Republic Seabee he was flying lost power over Windsor Mills in Quebec.
Marcel took these pictures of the crash scene and the funeral, and he had a few newpaper clippings paying homage to the pilot.
Now Eugene Gagnon is not an unknown pilot anymore. We know he flew 33 night missions over Europe as a night intruder Mosquito pilot.
Since 2010, Flight Lieutenant Eugene Gagnon has been on a ongoing mission to reunite 23 Squadron airmen and ground crew.
Courtesy W.C. Phil Russell via Tom Cushing via Peter Smith