Thanks from man who helped start squadron

"May I thank you for the paper which I received on October 26. I did like the centre pages and write-up for the Eagle Squadron pilots lost in the Island in 1941.

An RAF Wessex helicopter in a fly past tributeI would like to thank Steve Poole, the Manx Aviation Preservation Society, the band that played so well and the helicopter crew. Thanks for the church service and to the people of Maughold for their kindness to us at the reception in the village hall.

The bronze plaque is well placed in a lovely spot, a very nice memorial to those American pilots who volunteered to help us in our time of need.

I, with other ground crew, helped to form 133 Eagle Squadron and saw them off from Fowlmere airfield. We were with them two years or more and were sad at the loss of any pilots.

I want to send photos taken at the service to the Eagle Squadron museum in San Diego; I know they would be appreciated by the Eagles who are left.

Please thank Mike Proudfoot for taking such good photos and Sue Woolley for the write-up. It was Sue who took my address and promised to send me the paper.

As we had never been to the Isle of Man before we took the opportunity to explore the Island for the rest of our stay and, except for the weather, found it enjoyable."

E.G. Hayes, Ex-fitter, 133 Eagle Squadron

"PS: There should be more holiday films on TV in England about the Isle of Man. Show off your lovely Island."

The above letter was printed in the Manx Independent, 1st November, 1996.

Article by kind permission of Isle of Man Newspapers Limited.

Photograph by Steve Poole.