the bomb run flak knocked out the right engine. Left engine was hit over the
target. As we cleared the target, we jumped. 6000 feet opened at 4000feet.
During my jump, I had been able to see the co-pilot in a field with some
Frenchmen. I landed in a woodland clearing near Epone (NW Paris). I threw
equipment under bushes in one direction and ran in opposite direction. Three
hours hid in the bushes. When the search died out, I approached a house on
the edge of the woods. A woman was feeding her chickens. Although obviously
frightened, she motioned me back into the woods where her old husband
brought me some old civilian clothes (very small) and food*.
I spent the
night in their pig pen. There I learned that the co-pilot had been turned in
to the Germans by the French in the field.
On 25 June at
5.00, I set out for Caen with some coffee, a bottle of wine and some hard
boiled eggs. They told me to avoid Mantes. I was circling Mantes when I
approached a couple for a drink, and they agreed to help me. The man took me
to his home in Mantes-Gassicourt for a rabbit dinner. This man is Mr Maurice
Caulbaux of Mantes la Ville (S et O). During the meal, we were joined by Mrs
Caulbaux. After the meal, we left for their home
in Fontenay because they had been bombed out of Mantes. I carried a hoe on
my shoulder and we crossed the Seine in a flat bottom ferry.
I stayed there 9
to 10 days. The wife’s name is Germaine. Mr Caulbaux worked for a British
firm before the war. Mr Caulbaux was trying to get me through to the FFI.
On 2 July, we
dashed through Mantes during an air raid to make rendez-vous with the FFI.
Gendarmes on bicycles followed us one mile out of town before turning back.
I was taken to FFI HQ at Arnouville were I found Towning Farr RCAF in
hiding. Georges Paufigue** was the chief maquis and the HQ was in his house.
He is a notary. A branch of the Banque de Paris is also in his house. On 19
August, the Americans took the town."
* The man is Nestor Lambin according
article published in le Courrier de Mantes in November
** The correct spelling is actually Paufique. The Paufique
family was part of underground network "Libération Nord"