Gerald Hurdis and Lawrence Belisle found the strangest thing in an empty lot on Napoleon Street on the 13th of January in 1956. They had no idea however, that what they had found had fallen from the sky that day.
A mid air plane collision sent a RCAF jet fighter to the ground, while another plane flown by F.O Green limped home missing half a tail. Flt. Leut. John Kitchen of Alberta and navigator Flying Officer J. W. Delorey of Quebec City landed miles apart after the collision but neither was injured. Based in the Uplands airport, the planes were on a routine training missions when the accident happened heading west at 460 miles an hour.
Blown out of the plane at 13,000 feet they were seen by citizens of the Carleton Place area as the plane crashed in a bush lot owned by Al Munro three miles out of Carleton Place on Hwy 7. Joseph Chamney of Scotch Corners saw a parachute floating on the Mississippi Lake. When they arrived the found some footsteps on the frozen surface of the lake, and then found the pilot, and took him back to Scotch Corners.
Bud Thake was driving along the 9th line when he saw a parachute hanging from the Hydro lines. Delorey had managed to get out of the entanglement and was trying to thumb a ride. A helicopter picked him up on the Ottawa Highway outside of Carleton Place. Talk around town was that maybe the pilots lucky ending might dispel the superstition of Friday the 13th.
However, Ft Lt. Kitchen felt differently as he recalled F. O Green had reminded him before take off that it was Friday the 13th.
“I hope he never does that again”, he said.
No word if young Hurdis and Belisle got to keep the airplane seat they found.