1945 June 10th

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A 301 Paris, 10th June 1945                from H. Leplanq, 1, Square du Laonnais, Paris, XIXe

Dear Miss Powell,

I would have replied sooner to your nice letter, but I was so taken up by my brother’s return home from forced labour in Germany, and I have been kept out of the office, so that I haven’t found the time to do it till now.

Yes, it is indeed an extraordinary coincidence that my poor son breathed his last so tragically, so very close to your home. I cannot give you all the details of the whole drama – the plane came down on the slope near a path that runs off to the left as you drop down into Nogent, not far from the flour mill. It was the miller himself who went to put out the flames. The priest who is looking after my poor son’s grave is getting on, and he had previously taken on a young man with no close family, who had just returned from Germany, where he was a prisoner-of-war, when we visited his mentor.

The mayor, Mr Ducoeurjoli, from the Filandiere farm, is also grieving for one of his imprisoned sons, who had died in an accident.

If I do have problems when I go from Nogent to Brunelles, I shall call on your friend, but for my next journey, the parish priest has told me he’ll provide a car for me and I wouldn’t want to offend him by looking for help elsewhere.

Thank you all the same for your kind offer and I shall get in touch with your friend, as soon as possible. Before that I am hoping to meet you, as I can’t get back to Brunelles until August.

If you can let me know when you’re coming, then you won’t be risking a wasted journey, because I am sometimes away and I would be sorry to miss you.

Fortunately, I still have my Pierre’s English friends and I can talk about him to them.

Miss Young has been patient and kind enough to answer my letters, for which I am eternally grateful.

If I am not mistaken, Miss Nanette was more than just a friend to my dear son, which is why I am anxious to get to know her.

Thank you, dear Miss Powell, for your kind words. Please accept my own to you.

H. Leplanq

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