The NetLetter #1272

The NetLetter

For Air Canada Retirees
(Part of the ACFamily Network)


September 16, 2013 - Issue 1272
First Issue published in October 1995!
(over 5,400 subscribers)
In This Issue
Air Canada News
Reader Submitted...Photos
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery
Alan's Space
Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc
Reader's Feedback
Odds and Ends
Terry's Trivia
NetLetter Past Issues

Past Issues
Web Site Information

The NetLetter Web Site
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Terry Baker
Welcome to the NetLetter!

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

Terry Baker and the NetLetter Team

Air Canada News
Air CanadaWith the September 3rd, 2013 departure of Air Canada Express flight AC7207 from Red Deer to Calgary, Central Alberta officially became part of Air Canada's global network.
On September 5th, we have successfully completed our transfer of 15 Embraer 175 aircraft, the smallest jet aircraft in our fleet, to Sky Regional to operate the aircraft on our behalf under the capacity purchase agreement between the parties.

Sky Regional now operates 20 aircraft on our behalf under this agreement.

Reader Submitted Photos - Compiled by Terry Baker

Readers PhotosReader Submitted Photos -  The photos and information below have been submitted to us by our faithful readers.  

John Rodger has sent us this photo from the Jack McDougall collection of the First Flight of a propeller turbine Vickers Viscount in Vancouver, Sept 22, 1955.
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery - Compiled by Terry Baker
TCA/Air Canada  LogoBelow we have musings from the "Between Ourselves" and "Horizons" magazine, Air Canada publications from years gone by, as well as various in-house publications.

The NetLetter has been fortunate enough to have our readers donate vintage Trans-Canada Air Lines and Air Canada publications from as far back as 1941 to share with you. These have been scanned and are being prepared for presenting in a special area of the ACFamily Network for archival and genealogy research.

From the UK Pionairs monthly newsletter - September edition:
Over the years we have organized yearly trips to North America for the UK Pionairs which proved very popular with our members. As with most of these trips, it was planned with two days full of activity and fun using a hired bus. One of these trips was to Texas. Our trips have a name and this one was called Fiesta Texas. On all of our trips colleagues could arrive beforehand or stay afterwards, at their own expense, at the special group rate we were given. The idea of the trips was to give everyone a taste of the area so that they could return again if they wanted to, under their own steam. (The trips were organized, mainly, by Jack Morath and his wife Aureen but, sadly, no more!. A trip report for the Texas Fiesta can be found in the newsletter on the Pionairs web site under "UK -EC" district - eds)

Company highlights.
Nine DC-3 aircraft were sold to Frontier Airlines Inc. of Denver, Colorado. Delivery was made during October 1958. Delivery was made from Stevenson Field, Winnipeg so that spares could be included in the package deal.
The hundredth class of stewardesses graduated at Montreal on September 5th 1958 when 19 girls representing all walks of life went into regular line duty. A total of 1,847 girls have graduated as TCA stewardesses since training school was formed in the 1940's. (For this momentous occasion, there does not seem to be any photo or identifications - eds)
Antigua added to the route system effective December 16th, 1958.

Issue dated - January 1955
Some items gleaned from the "Between Ourselves" magazines.
First Christmas graduation class of Stewardesses in the company's history is shown here after completing course December 21st 1954.

From the left they are, front row:
Miss L. I. Houseman, Chief Stewardess, Therese D'Amour, Alice Bourret, Anne Lobsinger, Geraldine Wageman, Hilda Gardiner, Miss Jean Pelletier, Check Stewardess.

Back row: Joyce Flekke, Peggy Reegan, Arden Butler, Eileen Thompson, Betty Foster, Barbara McEwan and Therese Beauregard.

Issue dated - November 1958
TAMPA STAFF who expected to be handling record loads during the 1958 winter season are shown in this photo with Florida Manager, J. H. "Jim" Gehlsen, extreme right. They are, from the left: Frank Gaffney, Ramp Controller; Charlie Rhind, Airport Sales Supervisor: Shirley Brentnell, Passenger Agent; Berna Butcher, Secretary and Passenger Agents Rubye Noland, Robert Prentice and Ray Allison.

Alan's Space - by Alan Rust
Alan's Space
Not aviation related, but interesting! 
As most of you may know, the Costa Concordia was raised today from being on it's side in a precarious position after it sank on Isola del Giglio
on January 13, 2012.

So I Googled "Isola del Giglio" to see exactly where it was using Google Maps. Here is what I see when I go to that map...

Now Zoom in and see what looks like an island on the right...

Is actually the ship when it was on it's side... pretty amazing!

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 its "ancestry" of contributing airlines.
Issue dated - December 1984
Items from the "PWA-Flightlines" magazine -
As reported by Bernie Bricklebank - In 1971, the Pacific Western Retired Employees Association (PWAREA) was formed informally. Here we have this photo of the PWA Retired Employees Association Officers in 1984.

Left to right: Jack Wallace (Payload Control) Entertainment Officer; Captain Gene Gauthier (VR Fit Ops.) Vice President; Brian Hall (VR Maintenance) President; Gerry Levers (VR Maintenance) Treasurer; Roy Berryman (VR Maintenance) Liaison Officer; Captain Art Ralphs (VR FIt. Ops.) Vice President.

Not in picture: Bernie Bricklebank (VR Stores) Public Relations; Ethel Bryant (VR Accounting) Secretary.

The thirteenth meeting of the Pacific Western Airlines Retirees Association was held as a social luncheon at the Airport Inn on October 15/84. Sixty-four members and three guests were in attendance. Members from the whole system arrived. Paul Bissky, Chairperson of the Winnipeg chapter, together with the Secretary Lynda Boden and seven other members made it to help cement the feeling of companionship that is developing in our organization.

Members came from Vancouver Island and surrounding areas to swell our ranks. The acting executive held a short meeting prior to the luncheon to complete the signing of the papers of incorporation, before presentation to the lawyers who will apply to Victoria for a charter.

Those signing the application were the original initiators of the move to form a Pacific Western Airline Retirees Association and are listed alphabetically as follows: BILL ANDREWS, CAM BAINE, ROY BERRYMAN, BERNIE BRICKLEBANK, GENE GAUTIER, LARRY GINGRAS, BRIAN HALL, Chairman, GERRY LEVERS, ART RALPHS, GEORGE RILEY, BRUCE THOMSON, WAYNE Van HORNE,  and JACK WALLACE. After the signatures were affixed to the documents, the chairman called the meeting closed and everyone moved to the business at hand, the luncheon. The Winnipeg delegation were welcomed as were all other members, the bar was opened and everyone proceeded to renew old acquaintances.

Jack Wallace

Issue dated - May 1981
Items from the "CPAir NEWS" magazine -
LOOKING SMART in their new outfits, a group of CPA flight attendants poses in front of Toronto's Bloor Street CTO.

From left: Passenger Service Director Marg Smalley of Toronto, and flight attendants Franco Dilorenzo and Kathy Goddard, Toronto; Ed Stonehouse Vancouver; and Helene Roy, Montreal.

EIGHTEEN SENIOR staffers representing all CP Air passenger offices in northern Europe were invited to Amsterdam for a familiarization tour of the airline's cargo facilities.

Among those attending, from left on the loader: Detief Hinrichsen, Frankfurt; Turld Blom, Copenhagen; Peter Garms, Frankfurt; Roger Vanden Heede, London; Marglt De Lachs, Dusseldorf; John Pastuszynski, London; Allan Tremblay, London; Roger Stundebeek, Schiphol Airport; Eddie Lievens, Schlphol; Irma Sulter, Schiphol; Flemming Timmermann, Copenhagen; Mike Mueller, Vienna; and Peter Bourassa, Zurich. Beside loader are John Smerdon, Schlphol; Henry Ashcroft, Manchester; and Ana Wrossok, Dusseldorf.
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.
In NetLetter nr 1270 we had an article on the TCA Alumni and a question about its future. John Rodger sends this - I notice in you last NetLetter 1270 that you have asked about the TCA alumni. It was disbanded shortly after I became involved with the Pionairs not sure what year I think around 2000.

Jim Douglas, Director of the YVR Pionairs District Membership points out that the photo of the London ACRA 1978 is, in fact, the London England ACRA committee. We have revised the photo accordingly.

Don Baird sends news of the next meeting of the Montreal Chapter of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society.

A pilot's experiences flying Super Constellations in 1957-59 will be the subject of a talk at the September 19 meeting of the Montreal Chapter of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society. It will be presented by Clint Ward, whose 50 years of flying include RCAF training, 39 years with Air Canada and 10 years in Corporate aviation.

The meeting is at 365 St. Louis Ave., in Pointe Claire. Voluntary contribution of $5.00 is requested to cover the light lunch provided. Anyone interested in the history of civil or military aviation is welcome. For further information call 514-481-8786 or click on the Montreal CAHS Logo above.

Ken Pickford points to a very minor thing spotted in the "Ice Patrol" item, and not your fault. Not worth correcting. Sounds like it was in the original article you copied for NetLetter nr 1267.

The two references near the beginning to the Lockheed Electra's registration CG-NDZ should read C-GNDZ, with the hyphen after the C.

When Canada started running out of CF-xxx registrations in the early '70s they moved the hyphen one space the left and introduced G as an option for the 2nd letter, i.e. C-Fxxx and C-Gxxx. I think that change was made in 1974, although older aircraft could keep the CF-xxx registrations. Registrations with G as the 2nd letter have always been C-Gxxx with the hyphen after the C.

Odds and Ends.

Image Blank 200pxSometimes we receive articles and information that just doesn't fit in our other areas. This is where it goes!


Giant Concrete Arrows

This Really Exists: Giant Concrete Arrows That Point Your Way Across America.
Every so often, usually in the vast deserts of the American Southwest, a hiker or a backpacker will run across something puzzling, a large concrete arrow, as much as seventy feet in length sitting in the middle of scrub-covered nowhere. What are these giant arrows? Some kind of surveying mark? Landing beacons for flying saucers? Earth's turn signals? No, it's The Transcontinental Air Mail Route. On August 20, 1920, the United States opened its first coast-to-coast airmail delivery route, just 60 years after the Pony Express closed up shop. There were no good aviation charts in those days, so pilots had to eyeball their way across the country using landmarks. This meant that flying in bad weather was difficult and night flying was just about impossible. 


arrow 2
The Postal Service solved the problem with the world's first ground-based civilian navigation system: a series of lit beacons that would extend from New York to San Francisco. Every ten miles, pilots would pass a bright yellow concrete arrow. Each arrow would be surmounted by a 51-foot steel tower and lit by a million-candlepower rotating beacon. (A generator shed at the tail of each arrow powered the beacon.)

Now mail could get from the Atlantic to the Pacific not in a matter of weeks but in just 30 hours or so. Even the dumbest of air mail pilots, it seems, could follow a series of bright yellow arrows straight out of a Tex Avery cartoon. By 1924, just a year after Congress funded it, the line of giant concrete markers stretched from Rock Springs, Wyoming to Cleveland, Ohio. 

arrow 3  

The next summer, it reached all the way to New York and by 1929, it spanned the continent uninterrupted, the envy of postal systems worldwide. 

Radio and radar are, of course, infinitely less cool than a concrete Yellow Brick Road from sea to shining sea, but I think we all know how this story ends (no it has nothing to do with the Wizard of OZ). New advances in communication and navigation technology made the big arrows obsolete, and the Commerce Department decommissioned the beacons in the 1940s. The steel towers were torn down and went to the war effort. But the hundreds of arrows remain. Their yellow paint is gone, their concrete cracks a little more with every winter frost, and no one crosses their path much, except for coyotes and tumbleweeds.
But they're still out there.

PS - We found one! We happened to find a standing station at the Cibola County Historical Society page for the Aviation Heritage Museum - Please follow this link for more information... 


Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips - by Terry Baker

Terry BakerThe first scheduled flight of Rouge on July 1st was planned as AC1920 departing Toronto at 10:00 edt to Kingston, but the flight was delayed 10 minutes, therefore, flight AC1924, which departed at 10:05 edt Toronto to Liberia, Costa Rica with A319 C-GSJB takes the honors.





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.

We, at the NetLetter, wish to apologize for the Smiley in NetLetter nr 1271, we had no wish to upset any of our readership by its content.


Our cartoon of Mr. Tweedy is by Ned Riddle and appeared  in "Between Ourselves" issued August 1955 with the caption "Sir, are you sure it was your safety belt you unfastened?" 



The NetLetter is an email newsletter published (usually) once a week 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 welcome your feedback 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!

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

Disclaimer: Please note, that neither the NetLetter or the ACFamily Network necessarily endorse any of the airline related or other "deals" that we provide for our readers. We would be interested in any feedback (good or bad) when using these companies though and will report the results here. We do not (normally) receive any compensation from any companies that we post in our newsletters. If we do receive a donation or other compensation, it will be indicated as a sponsored article or link.


E&OE - (errors and omissions excepted) - The historical information as well as any other information provided here is subject to correction and may have changed over time. We do publish corrections when they are brought to our attention.
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 
  • Stewardess - Lisa Ruck, Brooklin, Ontario 
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