Paul-Émile Piché’s granddaughter.
She sent me this.
Hi Nicole and Pierre,
This is some brief info that I found on Rooney Alexander Hodgins. Please see below.
Find a Grave
April 3, 1923 Campbell’s Bay, Québec – June 11, 1948 in Ottawa, ON
Canada Veterans Hall of Valour
Hodgins was repatriated to Canada in December 1944. He retired from the RCAF in September 1945, but rejoined in May 1946. On June 11, 1948, Flight Lieutenant Hodgins was killed in a flying accident with a Vampire Jet which crashed at Ottawa (Rockliffe) Air Base.
As an 8 year old lad and my dad with 412 Transport Squadron in Rockcliffe, I sat on the hill overlooking the runways and witnessed the crash of Vampire jet #17037 on June 11, 1948, piloted by F/O Rooney Hodgins approx. 1/2 mile off the east end of the runway in the bush. Now in my mid 70’s, I never forgot that horrible site. Also, I finally flew in a Vampire T-11 in UK in 2012. What a memory.
This is quite a comment!
As a result of this unfortunate mishap, I was always intrigued with Vampires, leading to my flight in 2012 in UK with Matt Hampton of The Vampire Preservation Group. In 1948 many people were quite interested in viewing a propellor less aircraft actually fly. We watched in awe as F/O Hodgins aircraft slowly spiralled downward from a high altitude with no attempt to recover. Personally, I have always believed he was probably unconscious at the time. The original Vampires became known for oxygen system failures and were not fitted with ejection seat systems at that time.
Very sad. A Spitfire pilot having been decorated with a DFC and Bar! Very sad!
Thanks for commenting. I appreciate.