D-Day casualty’s son retraces his father’s steps and finds 40 pieces of his Dakota, and new understanding.

It was an overcast day in early April when Montreal businessman Harvey Engelberg found himself in the middle of a muddy farmer’s field in northern France, reciting the Jewish memorial prayer for the dead.

Engelberg was repaying a 78-year old debt on behalf of his late father. Cobby Engelberg had served as an RCAF radio operator during the Second World War, and had nearly died in a crash into the same field on D-Day in 1944.

Harvey has been searching for years to find the location where the French people had saved his badly-wounded father. He had nearly given up.

“A month ago, I got a letter from France from a Madame Ferey, and in her letter, she says ‘I own a farm in Bassenville’, and then my head just exploded,’ said Engelberg, referring to the name of the town. ‘I wrote back saying, ‘Yes!’, and she said, ‘Well, we found bits of the plane crash on our property. Would you like them?”

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