Mi Amigo: Crowd gathers in Sheffield's Endcliffe Park to remember US air crew who sacrificed their lives
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It is 79 years since 10 US airmen on board the B-17 Flying Fortress, known as Mi Amigo, crashed to their deaths in Endcliffe Park after its engines failed. The pilot, John Kriegshauser, had bravely decided to fly the plane into woodland to avoid the youngsters playing in the field.
On Sunday, February 19, a crowd gathered in the park by the memorial which Tony Foulds – who was one of those children – has lovingly tended since that tragic day in an inspiring act of dedication. Those present fell silent as the names of the crew were read aloud, in an emotional moment, before wreaths were laid at the memorial off a path just behind the meandering Porter Brook.
Royal Navy submariner Mark Ellwood was among those paying their respects. He said: “They made that ultimate sacrifice to save other people so it’s incredibly important when a bunch of servicemen have done something like that that it’s remembered.” Also present was Annie Espandju, who lives in Dunkirk, France, but is in Sheffield for a month volunteering. She told how she had been visiting the memorial every morning and was incredibly moved by Tony’s story after meeting him there. She said it was ‘so important’ to remember the crew of Mi Amigo.
The story of the crew’s sacrifice and Tony’s amazing act of remembrance made international headlines when in 2019 a military flypast was organised by former BBC Breakfast presenter Dan Walker to mark the 75th anniversary of the tragedy.