Vesta's Corner
Vesta StevensonWhy not allow the NetLetter to be your platform and opportunity to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC etal?

Share your experiences with us!

D-JetSwiftJet, a new Canadian on-demand airline offering service "anywhere and anytime to destinations around the world," has purchased five Diamond D-JET aircraft with options for 10 more.
The complete order (options included) would make SwiftJet Canada's largest D-JET operator and its first charter customer. SwiftJet hopes to "re-define chartered travel and turn it into a hassle-free low cost, private class option." Diamond expects to achieve certification of its D-JET in 2009 with aircraft deliveries to begin in 2010. SwiftJet hopes to offer Canadian business people the option of air travel and time savings where previously ground travel was the only realistic option.

Air Canada - our first 70 years

  • Aug 5th - Service between Toronto and Kansas City inaugurated.
  • Sept - Between Oct and Mar and for the purchase of a transatlantic ticket passengers become eligible for up to 8 nights free  accommodation in a small hotel in the countryside and having breakfast and dinner at the selected accommodation of either the U.K., France or Belgium
  • Sept 3rd - New call centre opens in Saint John.
    Saint JohnWe have this photo, but no id's.

  • Nov 18th - Service between Toronto and Raleigh-Durham started.
  • Mar - DC-9 fin 716  first of three to be sold to CEBU Pacific Air of Philippines.
  • Apr - Two more DC-9's fin 717 and 718 sold to CEBU.
  • Apr 10th - Air Canada celebrated its 60th anniversary. Starting off with a fleet valued at ca$169,176.72 and is now valued as a ca$4.9 billion company.
TCA/AC People Gallery

Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier "Horizons", should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

Continuation from NetLetter nr 1040 of the DP story as related by Gordon (Gordie) Aitchison -

The transfer of these DPs was handled in considerable secrecy. The Cold War, although not yet known by that name, had already begun and the West had no intention of allowing the East to know who was being transferred where. (Indeed, it is possible that some Western countries may not have wished this information even to be known to it's own allies!) That secrecy extended to the flights on which these DPs were being moved and the charter instructions from the Canadian Government to TCA clearly stated that no publicity should be afforded to the movement of these flights and that any enquiries about them should be handled in a discretely negative manner.
For a few years after the war, Prestwick Airport had it's own press corps.

There were two very distinct classes of passengers at that time. There were those who were emigrating, lots of them by the plane-load and there were often a heart-rending stories  Then there were the important business or Government passengers, film stars or other otherwise notable personalities and there were plenty of those flying into and out of and, particularly, through Prestwick. One must remember that Prestwick was very much a hub of activity for travellers crossing the Atlantic in these days.  Thus, Prestwick was a hive of activity and information for the press of that day and these reporters really had the airport "buttoned-up", and it is very doubtful if a single aircraft or passenger of note moved into or out of the airport at that time without their knowing about it.

Since it was a forgone conclusion that these forthcoming DP flights would excite considerable interest among the reporters, it was decided to take them into the management's confidence beforehand and ask that no publicity be given to them.

The Airport Commandant agreed to the TCA manager's request to use his "weight" in this delicate matter and put the request to the press "pack" himself. All agreed, bar one, who regarded the request as an attempt to censor the press and refused to be a party to any agreement to ignore the flights. He clearly stated:
"Don't try and tell me what I can or cannot print! " and would not budge from this position.

(The final chapter next time - eds)

Musings from "Horizons" - Issue dated October 1996

The last passenger flight into Prestwick was an L1011 on May 14th, 1990.
Prestwick CrewHere we have this photo, which had no identities. In order to identify some people, we contacted Jim McCall who sent this information - I was standing beside the photographer taking my own version of the photo of the last Tristar leaving PIk on May 14/1990. To assist in pinpointing all the commissary guys have the blue shirts.

Back row first
Unknown BAA staff/Tom McFarlane (BAA Apron Manager), Roddy McPhee - Station Manager AC PIK , (2 local Police and 1 BAA staff), Bill Jardine - Commissary, Local Customs officer, Graham Innes - Commissary, Jim Sloan - AC PIK Operations, Jim Morrison - Commissary, Alan Todd - DSM Scotland, Tom Callagham - CAT in charge AC PIK and  2 x BAA staff Mid/Front Row Ian Hastings - Commissary, David Auld - AC PIK Operations, Glynis McCartney, Sheena Ramsay, Roddy Broadie, Jean Paterson, Mary Kilpatrick all AC PIK Passenger Office, and finally in white shirt Drew Taylor - CAT AC PIK

Air Canada transferred the last of its presence in Prestwick to Glasgow on August 16th., 1996 The first transatlantic flight left Montreal on July 22nd., 1943 commanded by Captain Ron George, arriving in Prestwick July 23rd 1943 and included Graham Nettleton as Radio Operator and John Gilmore as navigator and who served as Prestwick's Station Manager in the 50's and 60's.

Prestwick has the distinction of having the first employee TCA hired outside North America - Marion MacDonald starting on November 22nd, 1943, retiring after 40 years service.

Prestwick MemoriesAnd, from "Horizons" issued dated December 1996, we have this photo of the early Prestwick airport terminal building.

From the issue dated November 1996

Last September 16th, Air Canada, at LHR, celebrated 62 years of service since a T.C.A. Lancaster landed at LHR, the first North American carrier to do so.

On the 50th anniversary, a maple tree was planted at LHR to mark the occasion.

Flight AttendantsHere we have a photo, from the 50th anniversary, of two Passenger Agents posing in their 1948 flight attendant uniforms.  

Issue dated December 1996

De-icing TruckAir Canada received a fleet of 7 new de-icing trucks. Here is a photo of the project team.

Issue dated February 1997

Here we have a photo of some of the Customer Service Agents in Antigua.
AntiguaLeft to right - Gillian Cooper, Colin Lynch, Luther E. Williams, Lucinda Cumberbatch and Dianne Derrick.

Bytes and Pieces

Alan RustOn November 11, 1999 Terry Kelly was in a Shoppers Drug Mart store in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. At 10:55 AM an announcement came over the store's PA asking customers who would still be on the premises at 11:00 AM to give two minutes of silence in respect to the veterans who have sacrificed so much for us. Terry was impressed with the store's leadership role in adopting the Legion's "two minutes of silence" initiative. He felt that the store's contribution of educating the public to the importance of remembering was commendable.

PoppyWhen eleven o'clock arrived on that day, an announcement was again made asking for the "two minutes of silence" to commence. All customers, with the exception of a man who was accompanied by his young child, showed their respect.

Do you have two minutes? If so, please visit the website below play the video and reflect on how our lives were changed by these heroes.

Remembrance Day Just click on the image to view the slideshow or click on this link.

Hint: click on the sizing symbol in the bottom right corner of the video to show it full size.

To find out more about the composer and singer, Terry Kelly, and
Canadi>n/CPAir/PWA, Wardair, etc. Events & People
Over the past months we have been publishing various photographs from earlier in-house magazines, should any photos prompt a memory in seeing one of them, feel free to send us your comments and thoughts.

1946 - Aug  27th - Maritime Central Airways , a predecessor of Eastern Provincial Airways,  put its first DC-3 into service CF-BZH, which it had acquired from  the US Armed Forces, and went into service in its military configuration with side seating benches.                   

1949 -  July 13th - Arrival of the inaugural flight Vancouver to Nadi

1957 - July - First tenders for aerial ferry work to the DEW Cambridge Bay airlift awarded exclusively to P.W.A. Frobisher Bay and Foxe Basin awarded to Wheeler Airlines (later Nordair) and Forval

AucklandService to Auckland, New Zealand began with the arrival on December 28th, 1951 with DC-6B registered  CF-CUO fin 344 c/n 43844. On July 8th 1965 this aircraft was destroyed by a bomb at Dog Creek, B.C. At one time the aircraft was leased to Trans Caribbean and Cunard Eagle.

1978 - 1st - 2nd
Wardair Dash 7Wardair utilized a Dash-7 to fly the Royal party when the Queen came to open the 11th Commonwealth Games in Edmonton.

1986 - Aug 21st - Wardair acquired its first Airbus A300 C-GIZL from South African Airways, and introduced it on the YYZ-YVR sector.

CF-ARMAndre Tison has sent us this photo of a Junkers 52 CF-ARM of Canadian Pacific Airlines. We have no identities for the people here.

Musings from the "Esprit" magazine
issue dated January 1987 -
LAX StaffSales reps, airport agents from across Western Canada division met for "Challenge '87",

Jack OrbanA labour of love for Jack Orban, his collection of over 350 aviation pins.
Readers Feedback
Member FeedbackWe conclude the story of the "Bermuda Sky Queen" from NetLetter nr 1040 as related by Bill Marr
The plan was that when the flying-boat reached the weather ship it would land on the ocean and the passengers would be transferred to the ship. The problem was that there were high winds and the ocean was extremely rough. The height of the waves was estimated to be between 25 and 35 feet, but as the flying-boat was almost out of fuel there was no alternative but to alight on the water by the ship.

The aircraft made several practice runs then landed on the stormy ocean and was immediately swamped by the first wave and disappeared. Steve, who had the North Star down at the Clipper's altitude, said that it was a terrible thing to see that great flying boat hit the water with a huge splash and momentarily disappear. They were sure that the flying-boat was lost when suddenly it surfaced with two of the four engines still turning.

The weather ship dropped a 900-foot line that the flying boat attempted to pick up. The North Star had now been delayed by over two hours and as they were concerned about their own fuel supply, they left the scene for Prestwick.

The London Times described the rescue as having "no precedent on a comparable scale in the history of air transportation". Steve took early retirement from Air Canada but continued to fly. His last flight was out of Hemet in California with his own aircraft, in the year 2000, a continuous flying career of 70 years.

He has logged 41,500 hours of flying, but believes that his total is nearer 41,850, which must make him the highest time pilot in Canada
and afford a standing among the top few pilots of the world.  

George Lothian,- "Flight Deck -Memories of an Airline Pilot",
ISBN 0-07-082975-6           
D. Blake McDougall, - Journal of the Canadian Aviation Historical Society, CAHS - Vol. 35  No.2     Summer 1997
Captain F.E.W. Smith,- "Biographies, Retired Air Line Pilots of Canada"

Carl Vetter has sent us this information regarding NetLetter nr 1037

This is in regard's to the DC10 that had an aborted take off in YVR.

DC-10I was part of the recovery crew from the slide shop and we were dispatched to recover the deployed slides. We had a first hand look at the incident. Apparently, the aircraft had a compressor stall on the number one engine just prior to rotation. The pilot, hearing a large bang, chose to abort the takeoff.  When the aircraft skidded into the grass it dug it's landing gear about 3 feet into the soil, with the forward landing gear rotating backwards causing it to rest in the fuselage. 
DC-10The aircraft was rebuilt, using a crew from Douglas for the lower fuselage repair.

Carl sent us the included photographs.

On another note, the Airbus 310 in your other picture, had the incident one week after the DC10's.  Heard on a comment from one employee to the RCMP officer assigned to security for the Airbus, "we sure are keeping you guys busy", the RCMP officer responded, " I wish you guys would learn how to park these things".

Carl Vetter

Cat 15 Slide shop YVR

Malcolm sends us this information -
Hi, re NetLetter 1038 British Eagle DC6.
Following link of this aircraft in flight this year 2008 at Biggin Hill air show U.K. The sound of this aircraft is awesome. Maybe you could post this for all to see..

Thanks Malcolm.


In NetLetter nr 1037 under TCA/AC People gallery we had a photo of the Vanguard check crew '63 '64 in Hangar-2 sent in by Jan Balledux and we asked for id's.

We had this response from Howie Noel
To The Netletter Team;
This refers to your request for the identification of other members of the above referenced crew photo, a better copy of which I chose to use.

I was a member of that crew and can provide names for the majority of the crew members.  I add also that it was one of the best crews I ever had the pleasure to work with. Al Reimer was the Crew Chief and yours truly was the only Certificated Aircraft Technician.
There was supposed to be two CAT'S but there were insufficient numbers of same available. However, as mentioned above, it was such a great crew that we managed very well.

VanguardAs can be seen, the crew members are closely gathered so I thought it best to number them and provide the names below. If any assistance is required, just let me know.
1. Urbino Francisco 2. Tony Casey 3. Jean Lefebvre 4. ???  5. ??? Peltier 6. Mike Burke 7. Al Fisher 8. Unknown  9. Alec Prud'homme 10. ??? DeGuire 11. Unknown 12. Henri Labreque 13. Rudi Gerhardt 14. Hans Jehle 15. Chris Crone 16. Largely hidden is Rene Bechtel  17. Walter Milne 18. "Cotterpin" Carriere 19. Howie Noel 20. Marcel ??? 21. Nbr Not Used  22. Al Reimer 23. Henry Ehlert 24. Bill McAdam 25. Sam Gatelaro 26. Eric Keskull 27. Unknown  28. Ken Gibbs 29. Jan Balledux 30. ??? Neichter

I hope this provides some good memories to some out there, it sure did for me.

Howie Noel (Number 19 in the photo - eds)
This & That
At Sunwing Airlines, 200 new cabin crew are being trained and 30 experienced pilots have been added to operate the expanded fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft, which will number 15 this winter.  This winter, Sunwing will operate from 29 Canadian gateways to 35 destinations in the USA, Caribbean, Mexico and Central America.

(Source www.yyznews.com)

Twin OtterThe prototype Series 400 Twin Otter aircraft produced by Viking Air Limited of Victoria BC, and brings the Twin Otter into the 21st century.  The new DHC-6-400 Technology Demonstrator made its first flight in front of a proud and dedicated employee group at Victoria airport on October 2nd.
Terry's Travel Tips

Terry BakerFamily Affair special to Sydney, Australia.
Looking to travel to Australia this fall? Why not take advantage of a great Family Affair special, featuring confirmed travel to Sydney. The departure from Canada is permitted until November 30, 2008. All travel must be completed by December 15, 2008.  This Family Affair discount represents $300.00 off the current
AFAMILY fares.   Details on Family Affair are available on the
Employee Travel Site under News & Policies.  For reservations or inquiries, please contact Call Centres at 1-888 247 2262

Important information for stand-by travelers departing Beijing.
Air Canada has moved from Terminal 2 to the new Terminal 3 in Beijing. Employees should be aware that travel from Beijing will now be more challenging due to frequent load restrictions coupled with the required boarding process in China. Chinese immigration regulations prohibit airlines from issuing boarding passes to passengers unless a seat is available. As a result, employee standby passengers must remain in the check-in area until a seat can be assigned.  Standby seats can only be assigned once the final weight and balance information is received.  Moreover, due to the increased distance between check-in and the gate in T3, which now takes at least 20 minutes to cover, it is highly recommended that employees travel with carry on baggage only and be prepared to run.  If there is congestion at security, the flight may leave with open seats.(Source - Daily).

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CartoonThis cartoon spotted in an edition of the Nanaimo Daily News which we thought said it all!.

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