Coincidences surround WWII pilot's local cousin

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By Carol A. Clark

The latest in a chain of uncanny coincidences linked to World War II pilot Lt. Everett L. Bailey occurred when a white car caught his cousin Fred Farnsworth’s eye while driving past the Los Alamos Lemon Lot last September.

Farnsworth, a World War II veteran himself, called the owner, who turned out to be originally from Switzerland.

“I asked her if she knew of Lake Greifensee and she told me she had friends there that she was planning to visit this summer,” he said.

Lake Greifensee is near the site where Farnsworth’s cousin died when shot down April 24, 1944, by the Swiss.

“On this Fourth of July, it’s a time to reflect on the fact that freedom is not free and this is the story of one family’s sacrifice to secure the freedom we enjoy,” Farnsworth said. “My cousin was a hero. He stayed with the airplane in an attempt to save the wounded on board and the airplane was too low for his parachute to open when he finally attempted to bail out.”

Bailey belonged to the 384th Bombardment Group, flying B-17 aircraft during combat missions over Europe as part of the Mighty 8th Air Force’s strategic bombing campaign against Nazi Germany.

“Everyone thought the Swiss were totally neutral but they weren’t,” Farnsworth said.

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