"If [Charles Nungesser] and [Francois Coli] did crash somewhere in Washington County, and if it was [Anson Berry] who was the witness to their death, they picked the worst guy in the world as a witness," Richard Gillespie, an aviation archeologist, said Wednesday.
Hansen's research, published in a 1980 issue of Yankee magazine, sketched the basic elements: On the morning of May 9, 1927, there were more than a dozen reports in Newfoundland of an airplane that arrived from over the ocean. If it was the White Bird, the Lavasseur PL-8 biplane had just enough fuel to reach northeast Maine. It could have made Round Lake at about the time that Berry was fishing.
[Gunnar Hansen] moved from observer to participant. With author Clive ("Raise the Titanic") Cussler and Ray Beck, (one of the hunters who claims to have found the engine in the woods, the bearish writer formed the White Bird Search Group. At the same time, two amateur archeologists -- Gillespie and Patricia Thrasher -- started The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery.