The NetLetter #1157

The NetLetter
 For Air Canada Retirees

 (part of the ACFamily Network)


March 19, 2011 - Issue 1157
First Issue published in October 1995!
(over 5,400 subscribers)
In This Issue
Women in Aviation
CAHS Upcoming Events
Pionair Meetings and Events
ACRA Upcoming Events
Star Alliance News
Air Canada Related News.
Reader Submitted...Photos
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery
Alan's Space
Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc
Reader's Feedback
Help Wanted...
Terry's Trivia
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Terry Baker

We welcome you to allow the NetLetter to be your platform, and opportunity, to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC, Wardair. etal. and share your experiences with us!

The NetLetter is an email newsletter published every weekend and contains a mixture of nostalgia, current news and travel tips. We encourage our readers to submit their stories, photos and/or comments from either days gone by or from present day experiences and trips. If we think that the rest of our readers will enjoy it, we will publish it here

We also This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. in regard to anything we post here. Many readers have commented with additional information, names and personal memories from the photos and articles presented here.

The NetLetter, which is free, is open to anyone that wishes to subscribe but is targeted to retired employees from Air Canada, Canadian Airlines and all the other companies that were part of what Air Canada is today. Thanks for joining us!

Terry & your NetLetter Team
Women in Aviation - Compiled by Terry Baker
A report from Papua New Guinea says the wreck of an aircraft that might be the Lockheed Electra flown by Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan has been found on a reef near Bougainville Island near Papua New Guinea.
The Papua New Guinea Post Courier is reporting "armed men" are guarding the area over a reef off Matsungan Island where an aircraft matching the description of Earhart's plane has been found. Divers are now checking the wreck and inquiries are flooding in from all over the world. There is no word on whether any human remains have been recovered.

Two groups are currently suggesting that their site of interest may mark the final resting place of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan... and they're more than 2,000 miles apart. Thursday's report of an aircraft resembling Earhart's sitting 230 feet below the surface of the ocean comes from near Earhart's point of departure, Papua New Guinea. The site is more than 2200 miles from the area where Earhart's final radio transmissions were heard near Howland Island. Reports surfaced Friday that a diver had been to the New Guinea wreck and discovered two skulls and three boxes of gold bullion.
Australian businessman Cletus Harepa, who is exploring the site, has told reporters that female pilots were known to smuggle gold out of the area in the 1930s. Ric Gillespie, who says he was informed of the New Guinea wreck months ago, has been searching for signs of Earhart 2,500 miles away, near Howland Island (Earhart's intended destination) and the idea that Earhart's plane might be near New Guinea is "silly beyond description."
CAHS Upcoming Events - Compiled by Alan Rust
CAHSWe have a listing below of all the CAHS (Canadian Aviation Historical Society) upcoming events that we are aware of.

If you are at all interested in Canadian aviation history, then we encourage you to attend a meeting or visit their web site at: www.cahs.ca

Ottawa - Thursday, March 31, 2011 - 

John. W. Crichton, President & CEO of NAV CANADA, shares details of the history and operations of Canada's civil air navigation services provider. Join us for what promises to be a most interesting evening.

Toronto - Saturday, April 9, 2011 - SPECIAL 3rd ANNUAL DINNER MEETING - Ted Barris, Author and Historian will be speaking on "The BCATP Story - "The Aerodrome of Democracy".

CAHS National Convention

Edmonton - June 22th to 26th - Mark your calendars for the CAHS 48th annual convention where they will explore the rich aviation history of Edmonton, the province of Alberta, and Canada's North. 

Presentations will range from civil and military aviation topics, to how regional heritage institutions are promoting this fascinating history, to creative ways authors are bringing these subjects to new audiences.


See: www.cahs.ca/events/convention.html for more information as it becomes available.

Pionair Meetings and Events - Compiled by Alan Rust

Pionairs LogoThe Air Canada Pionairs have ongoing Coffee Club Meetings in the following Districts; Vancouver Island, Vancouver, Okanagan, Edmonton, Calgary, Man-Sask, SW Ontario, Central Ontario, Ottawa, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia - P.E.I., Newfoundland, UK - E.C. and the USA - Caribbean. For full information, click here.

Meetings provide an opportunity to meet old friends, learn the latest news regarding Air Canada and your  pensions or hear a variety of guest speakers speaking on topics of interest to retirees.

LAST CHANCE! Registration cut off date is March 25, 2011

AGM 2011 VancouverThe 34th Annual General Meeting/Reunion of the Pionairs will be held in Vancouver from April 12 - 14th, 2011. Mark your calendars, more information is on the Pionair's web site at: www.pionairs.ca

ACRA Upcoming Events- Compiled by Alan Rust

ACRA  LogoRetirees Welcome!  

Steve Kerwin, organizer for the annual ACRA System Golf Event invites all retirees to the annual ACRA System Golf Tournament, Sunday, September 11 - 15, 2011. For more information see: www.acra.ca  Rates include 4 nights room, golf, dinners, and breakfasts from $326.00 - $400.00 per person.

Star Alliance News - Compiled by Terry Baker
Star Alliance
Star Alliance
Here's something that might be of interest...
The International Youth Exchange, run by a retired airline employee, is looking for applicants for its summer program.

The program uses employee flight benefits to match children with other airline families.
If you would like to know more, go to:
www.intlyouth.org or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Air Canada Related News - Compiled by Terry Baker
Air Canada News Air Canada  will commence service from the Toronto Island's Billy Bishop Airport on May 1, 2011

The initial schedule will provide up to 15 daily non-stop return flights between downtown Toronto and Montreal Trudeau International Airport.

The service will use state-of-the-art Bombardier Dash 8 Q-400 aircraft operated by Sky Regional Airlines Inc., an associated company of Skyservice Business Aviation.
Reader Submitted Photos - Compiled by Terry Baker
Readers PhotosReader Submitted Photos - The photos and information below was sent to us by our faithful readers. If you would like to send us some old photos you have lying around. we will consider them for publication in a future NetLetter. We prefer good quality airline related photos, with descriptive text included with the submission.

lgavisitPhil Pawsey has dug up this photo for us -
This photo was taken at LGA in 1948 or 49.
L/R Kelly Edminson, his wife, Walt Fowler, Dolly Seddon, Phil Pawsey, Lea Connolly, Gordie Thom, Cliff Seddon, Vance Larsen

The trip (was) from Moncton to New York, (and) why in heck I was included was and still is a mystery to me. It was a TCA Lockheed 1408 maybe a 1808 -no stewardess on board, I think one of the wives served the box lunches and coffee. Vance Larsen who was the F/O delivered this photo to me.


TCA/Air Canada People Gallery - Compiled by Terry Baker
TCA/Air Canada  LogoMusings from the "Between Ourselves" and "Horizons" magazine, an Air Canada publication from years gone by, and various in-house magazines.
Issue dated - March 1st 1955
Extracted from "Between Ourselves" magazine

compressorWith the arrival of the Vickers Viscount aircraft, the Winnipeg School is the busiest in all Canada. One of the most intensive training programs ever undertaken by Trans-Canada Air Lines is underway in Winnipeg, where personnel from many major branches of the airline are learning about the Vickers Viscount.


Here we have three photos. Receiving instructions on the compressor section of the Rolls Royce Dart engine are, from the left: Harold Holmgren, John Hislop, Eddie Gervais, Brian Wood. J.B.Gillings (Instructor) and Ron Leslie.

galleyLearning the finer points of the galley equipment are these stewardesses. From the left: Bunny Untershutz, Elaine Chapman, Irene Eberele, M. Foster, E.Ellingsen and Gus Nanten. Bob Barrie is the steward-in-charge.
refuelingHere we see Spence Rhodes of YUL, Les Story from YYZ receiving instructions on the under wing pressure refueling system from Dick Waller.
productionHere is a photo of the Viscount production line at Vickers Armstrong's in the UK working on the company's order.

lhrstaffReceiving their five year pins from Jack Ross, Station Manager LHR. From the left:: Reg Stoaks, Alf Lake, Jack Ross, Les Barrett, George Bourne. All from the Cargo Department.

Missed from Feb 1, 1955 in NetLetter 1156

UK VisitThis group of TCA'ers from YUL and YYZ visited the British capital. Here they are meeting with the Director-General, BTA.  John G. Bridges, Director-Genera!, British Travel Association.


From the left they are - R. J. Nicholson and Peter Jerome of Montreal; J. C. Finlay, Toronto; Eddie May, DT&SM in London; Andy Bartok, Montreal; Vic Fuicher, Toronto; G. J. Churchill, Hamilton, and W. Douglas Powell, Toronto.

Issue dated - January 1958

The company announced they were going to build the worlds first overhaul and maintenance base designed for jet aircraft. This will be erected at Dorval for a cost of ca$20 million and will be the largest of its kind in Canada. Completion planned for 1960.


Million dollar blaze razes the airport at Lakehead Airport on November 29th 1957. At the time of the fire, Captain Wallie Davies was the pilot of a TCA DC-3 enroute from YYZ and spotted the blaze 5 miles out. Because the fire gutted the control tower, he was unable to make radio contact but landed safely. Some ground equipment for the company was destroyed. 


While flying as regular flight from Seattle to Victoria, Capt. Riddle spotted a flaming fishing boat on the Strairs of Juan de Fuca and alerted the US coast guard for help. A successful rescue was effected, but the vessel was lost.

prestwickstaffThis photo is part of the Sales and Operations Prestwick staff following the presentation of some 10 year pins. We know the person holding the cake in the front row is Station Manager J.R.Gilmore, but the rest of the group remain anonymous.

ywgacraThe new president of the Winnipeg Recreation Association at the Assiniboine Hotel late in 1957.  

From the left: H.Oliver, V.Lemieux, Ed Bryson, J.Anderson, F.Bombersback, B.Clarke, H.Poole, K.Birley.

Issue dated - March 1973
Extracts from "Horizons" magazine.
newyorkstaffDuring a familiarization tour of New York by President Baldwin, several employees met with him. Here are two groups.
(Unfortunately, no identifications - any help? - eds).

palmdalevisitThese Vancouver Flight Attendants toured the final L1011 assembly plant at Palmdale in February 1973. From the left are Vicki Snyder, Marilyn Elkon, Martha Middleton, Karen Grante, Dennis McAuliffe.

Issue dated - October 1990
Extracted from the "Parts & Pieces" magazine (issued for the stores people by the stores people)

chauffeursIn Technical Operations, the Chauffeurs within the Materials Management Division have the unique honour of being able to implement customer care by means of both direct client interaction as well as by providing the necessary support functions 'involved in material distribution.


Not only is the role of the Chauffeurs distinctive, the extent to which they participate in the airline operation can at times seem rather unbelievable. They are responsible for routine material distribution for a vast area, including Ramp, Power Plant, F.S.E.S., Commissary Stores, Cargo (Dorval and Mirabel), Place Air Canada (and downtown run), Mirabel Stores, Toronto, Ottawa, Quebec City and more. However, it is their ability to handle the abnormal demands that are routinely placed upon them which gives them their notoriety.
A fine group of gentlemen, they are from left to right:
lst row: Fred Montreuil, John Hore, Brian Hitcheni, Tony Cortez, Jules Leger, Hugo Guilbault 2nd row: Leo Cortez, Graham Sadler, Wayne Taylor, cy Haines, Frank Forjan, Ian Taylor 3rd row: Anthony Laniel, Frank Forjan, Bill Eaton, Steve Mason, Pierre Pilon, John Hargrove.

lan's Space - by Alan Rust
Alan's Space
Alan Rust
Written by a Delta pilot on approach to Tokyo during earthquake - a different perspective on the earthquake in Japan.

I'm currently still in one piece, writing from my room in the Narita crew hotel. It's 8am. This is my inaugural trans-pacific trip as a brand new, recently checked out, international 767 Captain and it has been interesting, to say the least, so far.
I've crossed the Atlantic three times so far so the ocean crossing procedures were familiar. By the way, stunning scenery flying over the Aleutian Islands. Everything was going fine until 100 miles out from Tokyo and in the descent for arrival. The first indication of any trouble was that Japan air traffic control started putting everyone into holding patterns. At first we thought it was usual congestion on arrival. Then we got a company data link message advising about the earthquake, followed by another stating Narita airport was temporarily closed for inspection and expected to open shortly (the company is always so positive).

From our perspective things were obviously looking a little different. The Japanese controller's anxiety level seemed quite high and he said expect "indefinite" holding time. No one would commit to a time frame on that so I got my copilot and relief pilot busy looking at divert stations and our fuel situation, which, after an ocean crossing is typically low.

It wasn't long, maybe ten minutes, before the first pilots started requesting diversions to other airports. Air Canada, American, United, etc. all reporting minimal fuel situations. I still had enough fuel for 1.5 to 2.0 hours of holding. Needless to say, the diverts started complicating the situation. Japan air traffic control then announced Narita was closed indefinitely due to damage. Planes immediately started requesting arrivals into Haneada, near Tokyo, a half dozen JAL and western planes got clearance in that direction but then ATC announced Haenada had just closed. Uh oh! Now instead of just holding, we all had to start looking at more distant alternatives like Osaka, or Nagoya.
One bad thing about a large airliner is that you can't just be-pop into any little airport. We generally need lots of runway. With more planes piling in from both east and west, all needing a place to land and several now fuel critical ATC was getting over-whelmed. In the scramble, and without waiting for my fuel to get critical, I got my flight a clearance to head for Nagoya, fuel situation still okay. So far so good. A few minutes into heading that way, I was "ordered" by ATC to reverse course. Nagoya was saturated with traffic and unable to handle more planes (read- airport full). Ditto for Osaka.

With that statement, my situation went instantly from fuel okay, to fuel minimal considering we might have to divert a much farther distance. Multiply my situation by a dozen other aircraft all in the same boat, all making demands, requests and threats to ATC for clearances somewhere. Air Canada and then someone else went to "emergency" fuel situation. Planes started to heading for air force bases. The nearest to Tokyo was Yokoda AFB. I threw my hat in the ring for that initially. The answer - Yokoda closed! no more space.

By now it was a three ring circus in the cockpit, my copilot on the radios, me flying and making decisions and the relief copilot buried in the air charts trying to figure out where to go that was within range while data link messages were flying back and forth between us and company dispatch in Atlanta. I picked Misawa AFB at the north end of Honshu island. We could get there with minimal fuel remaining. ATC was happy to get rid of us so we cleared out of the maelstrom of the Tokyo region. We heard ATC try to send planes toward Sendai, a small regional airport on the coast which was later the one I think that got flooded by a tsunami.

Atlanta dispatch then sent us a message asking if we could continue to Chitose airport on the Island of Hokkaido, north of Honshu. Other Delta planes were heading that way. More scrambling in the cockpit - check weather, check charts, check fuel, okay. We could still make it and not be going into a fuel critical situation ... if we had no other fuel delays. As we approached Misawa we got clearance to continue to Chitose. Critical decision thought process. Let's see - trying to help company - plane overflies perfectly good divert airport for one farther away...wonder how that will look in the safety report, if anything goes wrong.

Suddenly ATC comes up and gives us a vector to a fix well short of Chitose and tells us to standby for holding instructions. Nightmare realized. Situation rapidly deteriorating. After initially holding near Tokyo, starting a divert to Nagoya, reversing course back to Tokyo then to re-diverting north toward Misawa, all that happy fuel reserve that I had was vaporizing fast. My subsequent conversation, paraphrased of course...., went something like this: "Sapparo Control - Delta XX requesting immediate clearance direct to Chitose, minimum fuel, unable hold." "Negative Ghost-Rider, the Pattern is full" <<< top gun quote <<< "Sapparo Control - make that - Delta XX declaring emergency, low fuel, proceeding direct Chitose" "Roger Delta XX, understood, you are cleared direct to Chitose, contact Chitose approach....etc...."

Enough was enough, I had decided to preempt actually running critically low on fuel while in another indefinite holding pattern, especially after bypassing Misawa, and played my last ace...declaring an emergency. The problem with that is now I have a bit of company paperwork to do but what the heck.

As it was - landed Chitose, safe, with at least 30 minutes of fuel remaining before reaching a "true" fuel emergency situation. That's always a good feeling, being safe. They taxied us off to some remote parking area where we shut down and watched a half dozen or more other airplanes come streaming in. In the end, Delta had two 747s, my 767 and another 767 and a 777 all on the ramp at Chitose.

We saw to American airlines planes, a United and two Air Canada as well. Not to
mention several extra Al Nippon and Japan Air Lines planes. Post-script - 9 hours later, Japan air lines finally got around to getting a boarding ladder to the plane where we were able to get off and clear customs. - that however, is another interesting story.
By the way - while writing this - I have felt four additional tremors that shook the hotel slightly - all in 45 minutes.

(On behalf of the NetLetter and all our readers we'd like to offer our deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolences to the Japanese people, especially those who lost their loved ones.") If you wish, you can donate here for the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Relief Fund or through the Red Cross at: www.redcross.ca  
Click on the image below for satellite photos of the damage in before and after photos. It's a split screen where you can move the slider left and right to see the difference between photos.
Japan Earthquake 2011
Japan Earthquake Damage March 2011
Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc. People & Events
- Compiled by Terry Baker
CAIL TailsNews and articles from days gone by gleaned from various publications from C.A.I.L. and it's "ancestry" of contributing airlines.
Issue dated - February 1998
Extracts from the "Canadi>n Flyer" magazine
lastymxarrivalThe last international arrival into Mirabel Airport (YMX) was CP45 on September 14th 1997. Here is the crew which operated that flight. From the left: Capt M. Weismuller  F/O S. Graham, CSD .M. Lachape Fas (check) E.Martens,  M. Spencer M. Desaulniers,  K.Trainos, M.Chindamo and R. Del Gaucho.
Posing with a few members of the crew are airport agents (far right) UlI Opalka and (seated in front) Danny Riggo.

Issue dated - October 1997
rampratsRevealing secret hand signs at the YUL ramp lunch room are (l to R) Station Attendants John Cameron, John Bryant, Gordie Stephenson, Yves Cuillerier and John Blair. This as a result of the transfer of Canadi>n international services from Mirabel International Airport (YMX)  on September 15th.

yulresYul reservations Agents (I to r) Johanne Riopelle, Marcel Rondeau Manon Gravel, Paulo Maffei, Helene Tremblay, Mirella Cafaro and Genia Beylerian highlight the fact that YUL Res has several specialized support desks. These include Meda Desk, which handles medical requests and Off- Schedule Operations (OSO,), which takes care of customers affected by irregular operation.
yulfltattsYUL Flight Attendants (l to r) Rosa Herygers, Michel Pilon (CSD) Barbara Tekker-Brzezinski and Sue Agostino cared for YUL YYC-YVR passengers in extraordiny fashion. Michel initially shied away from recognition but persistence paid off. We have 160 YUL-based flight attendants.

Reader's Feedback - Compiled by Terry Baker
Reader's Feedback
Every week we ask our readers for their stories or  feedback on what they have read here in previous issues. Below is the feedback we have received recently.

We received this appeal from Kurt Wohlgemuth...
In two of your NEWSLETTERs (nr 1079 July 25/09 and nr 1081 Aug 8/09) you mention Ed Sword, former Swissair Captain, retired in the 80's as a member of your Newsletter. Some friends of Ed would like to arrange a 'get together' meeting but have no idea about Ed's Address. They just know that he left Switzerland for Canada after his retirement. Maybe (someone) might be able to spot Ed Sword's address or even better Ed's e-mail address so those old friends might contact him directly. With best regards and many thanks in advance Kurt Wohlgemuth Ret. Capt. MD 11 Swissair This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
George Brien has sent us this information -
Halifax  and Air Nova - the early days
QK was set up  as a Regional Carrier to  feed the YHZ  AC Hub. It began flying in July 1986 with 2 Dash-8's.
airnove(Here are) some Dash 8's lined up for the 0800/1100 rush- circa. Summer 1987.
airnove-1This photo shows CSA Louise Rowe and Sandy Fraser at gate 22 getting the flights out in time  3 within 5 mins of each other. Louise Rowe was formerly a flight Attendant back in the 70's.

airnova-2By 1988 BA146's were added to the fleet along with more Dash8's I don't recall the Blanc Sablon and St Anthony destinations, may have been operated by Air  Labrador?



Further to the article from Alan Evans regarding the DC-6 in NetLetter nr 1156,
Don Robinson sends this information -
It is interesting to note that their website (http://www.dc-6.co.za/index.htm) has many links to photos and videos of this old girl.  Would be nice to see this link included in the Netletter.

Don Robinson

Help Wanted
We have received this appeal from Mrs Donna Barker nee Held -
I am looking for pictures of my Dad Joseph Held, Flight Operations, Ground Training, Dorval Base.  He passed on August 20th, 1978 from Pincourt, Ile Perreault, Quebec at the age of 58, Seniority E8. 

I understand from my late Mom, Mary Held that his picture is in an Aviation Museum in Ottawa. I am now 63 and would like to have pictures for my Grand Children of him. I live in Airdrie, Alberta.  I was very proud of his accomplishments as he was known as Mr. DC8 and would like to pass this information on to have his name remembered.  Thank you for your consideration in this request.
(Donna sent this later email, perhaps some of his co-workers have photos with him in - eds)

He died after a day at work, so he was still actively working at the time. I have pictures of him teaching in class as he taught on the simulators. He worked for you guys for 37 years. We lived in California in 1952 in a hotel on the corner of Hollywood and Vine for a few months while he taught pilots there and around 1965 he went to Jamaica to teach for a couple of weeks.  Some of the pilots he taught may still be around.  Thanks for your ear. Mrs. Donna Barker 403-945-1516.  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips - by Terry Baker
Terry Baker
Terry Baker

From the monthly newsletter issued by the U.K. Pionairs -
March 2011 edition.

Details of the Air Passenger duty as follows:
From 1st November 2010, the Air Passenger Duty (APD) will rise for flights from the UK. The rates charged depend on the passenger's final destination and the class of travel. Although APD is a tax on airlines, most airlines pass on the duty charge to passengers. So the current bands are calculated on the distance between London and the capital city of the destination country or territory. For example a flight to anywhere in the USA will attract APD in the same tax band (band B); the tax band being based on the distance to Washington DC.  If you travel in Economy class, the bands work out as follows:

Band A   0-2,000 miles = £12, 
Band B  2,001-4,000 miles = £60, 
Band C  4,001 to 6,000 miles = £75 and 
Band D over 6,000 miles = £85.


If you travel in Business or First Class the rate is doubled. APD is not paid on flights departing from airports in the Scottish Highlands and Islands. To make it easier, here are some examples. Band A includes all of Europe, the Canary Islands, the Channel Islands, Madeira, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey. Band B includes Canada, Egypt, Middle East, Nigeria, Pakistan, Uganda and USA. Band C includes Brazil, China, India, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand. Band D includes Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand and the Philippines.

Smileys - Compiled by Terry Baker
As we surf the internet and back issues of airline magazines we regularly find airline related jokes and cartoons. Below is our latest discovery.
cartoon From the "Between Ourselves" issue March 1955 we have this cartoon by Dave Mathias. Showing the reason why airports went to covered walkways.

We hope you have enjoyed this issue of the NetLetter, see you next week!

Your NetLetter Team
First published in October, 1995
  • Chief Pilot - Terry Baker, Nanaimo, B.C.
  • Co-pilot - Alan Rust, Surrey, B.C.
  • Flight Engineer - Bill Rowsell, Londesboro, Ontario
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