On Dec. 5, 1952, Andrew Robert MacKenzie was flying over North Korea in his F-86 Sabre jet when he experienced hydraulic problems. He was at 42,000 feet, in a firefight with enemy MiG jets when he was hit.
“Before I could take any evasive action, my canopy was blown off,” MacKenzie said years later. “There were two strikes on my right elevator, followed by three more in rapid succession on the fuselage. I tried to break off to evade more fire, but my aircraft was out of control. I was starting to roll to the left and couldn’t stop. In a few seconds, I was barrelling to Earth. I bailed out.”
Bailing at such a high speed tore off his helmet, oxygen mask, gloves, and perhaps most critically, his dog tags.
It was the second time the RCAF pilot had been shot down; the first was in June 194...