At 7pm on the 9 of August 1944, Flight Sergeant Alex Mackay took off from R.A.F. Lemming in North Yorkshire, aboard Halifax (Mark III) bomber, MZ363 ZL. The rest of the crew were all Royal Canadian Air Force; the pilot was Flight Lieutenant G P Wyse and co-pilot Flying Officer J S Beresford. The other members of the crew were Pilot Officer J J Ringer the navigator, Sergeant R G Grout, Sergeant S J Levesque and W02 R S Ferguson who were the air gunners.
During the night of 9 and 10 of August 1944, 427 Squadron attacked four V-I flying-bomb sites at La Neuville in France, with fifty-eight Halifax bombers and twenty Mosquito bombers. Halifax bomber MZ 363 ZL was lost on the raid, it crashed into the sea off the French coast.
Local people found Flight Sergeant Alex Mackays body on the beach and buried him in a French civilian cemetery; three of his comrades were also found and buried near by. The remains of other three crewmembers were not recovered; their names are remembered on the Runnymeade Memorial to the missing of the Royal Air Force. The Mackay family from Scullomie suffered the greatest loss of any in Tongue during the two World Wars and this sacrifice must not be forgotten.