Mr. Speaker, I rise today to salute navigator Edward McCloskey, native son of Maidstone, missing in action in France during World War II, and I give credit to Essex Free Press reporter Sylene Argent and thanks to Mark McGuire, also of Maidstone, for his account.
While living in France in 1989, Mark learned through a new-found friend that in July 1944, the friend and his mother saw a low-flying plane with RCAF insignia, followed by an exchange of gunfire and a large explosion. Learning that the crew was buried at the Commonwealth cemetery nearby, Mark paid his respects. He paused at one of the tombstones. lt read “E.J. McCloskey, Navigator”.
Thirty years later, Navigator McCloskey's niece, Marilyn Scratch, approached Mark to ask if he was the one who had found “Uncle Ed”. He was able to provide photos of the headstone and valuable closure to the family.