Notes from interview by Robin McGrath with Patrick McGrath
July 1994


Dermot McGrath is the son of the late Johnny McGrath and the nephew of Anthony McGrath. Dermot wasn’t old enough to have been one of the men who claimed to have found a plane in the Gull Pond, but he was one of the few people to have seen a piece of the plane.

Dermot says that the piece of the plane that he saw belonged to his father. His most vivid memory of the metal was his father telling them as children that they couldn’t play with the souvenir of the White Bird. Dermot says he wanted to cut the metal to make a miniature windmill but his father would not let him.

The piece his father had Dermot described as being eighteen to twenty inches long. He says it was very light and appeared to have been torn apart, as though it had been in an explosion or had hit something very hard. For years he said his father kept the souvenir well protected hoping that someday it would be linked to the plane’s disappearance and be looked upon as a piece of history.

As the years passed on and the White Bird became a forgotten item Dermot says the chunk of metal his father had sort of lost its importance. After a while he says it was removed from the house and placed in the stable. He remembers this because he recalls someone cutting their head on it as it was hanging from the roof. As to where the piece his father had went, he does not know. He says there is a place where their garbage was thrown out called the “sallys,” which is one possible place it could now be. It could have been thrown out here when it seemed as if nothing were going to come of the White Bird’s mysterious disappearance. It is also possible that it could have been discarded when the stable was torn down. The metal would have been of little use and eventually would have been destroyed and forgotten about.

Dermot said he also can remember his Uncle Anthony telling the story of the day he found the plane in the Gull Pond. His says this is the story that spurred several other local residents to visit the pond in search of some of the wrecks remains for themselves. He does know that Mr. Patsy Judge was one of those who also brought home a piece of the plane. He heard that Patsy’s was lost in a fire in Gooseberry Cove.

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