The following article (Part 3) originally appeared in the August 1999 Issue of "Air and Space Magazine" which I found fascinating and I thought you may be interested in, of an unplanned trip around the world by a PanAm crew who got caught by the outbreak of WWII in the Pacific and made the most unexpected trip of their careers. (This is a continuation from NetLetter 1011...)
1941 CIRCUMNAVIGATION OF the GLOBE BY PAN AM'S "PACIFIC CLIPPER" (continued from Netletter 1011)
Early the next morning they took off for Surabaya, fourteen hundred miles to the west across the Timor Sea. The sun rose as they droned on across the flat turquoise sea, soon they raised the eastern islands of the great archipelago of east Java. Rude thatch-roofed huts dotted the beaches; the islands were carpeted with the lush green jungle of the tropics.
Surabaya lay at the closed end of a large bay in the Bali Sea. The second largest city on the island of Java, it was guarded by a British garrison and a squadron of Bristol Beaufort fighters. As the Pacific Clipper approached the city, a single fighter rose to meet them; moments later it was joined by more. The recognition signals that Ford had received in Australia proved to be inaccurate, and the big Boeing was a sight unfamiliar to the British pilots. The crew tensed as the fighters drew closer. Because of a quirk in the radio systems, they could hear the British pilots, but the pilots could not hear the Clipper. There was much discussion among them as to whether the flying boat should be shot down or allowed to land. At last the crew heard the British controller grant permission for them to land, and then add, "If they do anything suspicious, shoot them out of the sky!" With great relief, they commenced a very careful approach.
As they neared the harbor, Ford could see that it was filled with warships, so he set the Clipper down in the smooth water just outside the harbor entrance. "We turned around to head back," Ford said. "There was a launch that had come out to meet us, but instead of giving us a tow or a line, they stayed off about a mile and kept waving us on. Finally when we got further into the harbor they came closer. It turned out that we had landed right in the middle of a minefield, and they weren't about to come near us until they saw that we were through it!"
When they disembarked the crew of the Pacific Clipper received an unpleasant surprise; they were told that they would be unable to refuel with 100 octane aviation gas. What little there was severely rationed, and was reserved for the military. There was automobile gas in abundance however, and Ford was welcome to whatever he needed. He had no choice. The next leg of their journey would be many hours over the Indian Ocean, and there was no hope of refueling elsewhere. The flight engineers, Swede Roth and Jocko Parish, formulated a plan that they hoped would work. They transferred all their remaining aviation fuel to the two fuselage tanks, and filled the remaining tanks to the limit with the lower octane automobile gas.
"We took off from Surabaya on the 100 octane, climbed a couple of thousand feet, and pulled back the power to cool off the engines," said Ford. "Then we switched to the automobile gas and held our breaths. The engines almost jumped out of their mounts, but they ran. We figured it was either that or leave the airplane to the Japs."
(To be continued - eds)
This weeks postcard -
Gander Newfoundland - The Crossroads of the World
Update to Family Affair Program. Effective immediately, the "14 day before departure restriction" on Family Affair reservations has been removed, and Family Affair bookings can now be made anytime providing "L" class inventory is available. There will be further changes to the Family Affair program coming.
Beginning May 1, all Saskatoon Toronto flights will be operated with Embraer E90 aircraft on 4 daily flights. A 5th frequency starting May 18th will be added as a late evening flight from Toronto with CRJ-705 aircraft. This will improve service from Saskatoon to Toronto and provide more convenient access to Air Canada's significant worldwide network. In addition, we will also be doubling service from Regina to Vancouver from one frequency a day to two frequencies a day for the summer peak.
Jan 15th - Inaugural flight YYZ-LHR-BOM - Singapore was operated with L1011-500 C-GAGH fin 553 c/n 1207. Under the command of Capt. F.Richards, F/O R. Ashleigh and S/O J.Ryntjes carried 101 passengers.
Feb 14th - New cargo facility opened a LAX, 62,000 sq ft.
The first fleet expansion occurred in 1939 as explained in this letter which appeared in "Horizons" dated August 1984.
The following letter appeared in "Horizons" dated Sept 1984 - How it was The inclusion of the supplement with a recent issue of "Horizons" on planning a 50th Anniversary, brought to mind how it was when we started our transcontinental (well, Montreal-Vancouver anyway) service.
As can be seen from TCA's timetable dated April l, 1939, if you wanted to fly from Montreal to Vancouver, deciding which flight to take was not difficult - you either took Trip 1A from Montreal to North Bay, and Trip 1 from North Bay to Vancouver - or you forgot the whole thing.
If you decided to fly, you left Montreal at 9.00 p.m. and arrived in Vancouver at 11.35 a.m. the following day - unless, of course, a service stop at Wagaming was necessary, in which event, it would take a little longer.
Your aircraft, a Lockheed 1408, had as many engines as the Boeing 767 , but it carried fewer passengers (187 fewer, to be exact) and the fare (First Class or Economy) was $144.65, one way or $255.10 return.
Assuming a FULL passenger load for a return (UL-VR-UL) trip, the revenue would be $3.571.40 - for 29.40 hours of flying time, or $120.38 per hour flown.
How did we do it? The passengers did all right too - they got a 49.20 hours of flying for $255.10, or $8.60 per hour.At this rate, a UL-YR-UL trip today (10.19 hours) would cost about $88.75.
Of course there was some air mail too, but it cost only .03c extra, or .O1c (if my memory serves me) to send a letter air mail, so the air mail contract must have been pretty modest.
This says something about progress - and inflation.
Before September 11, 2001 it was fairly common for both passengers and employees to enter the cockpit during a flight for a short visit.
I remember the looks on children's faces after having visited the cockpit and experiencing the view that you only get from there. The instrument panels are always a hit as well. We used to say "all those clocks and none of them show the right time" (before the glass cockpits replaced them).
One of the most memorable flights I ever had was when my wife and I were returning from vacation and caught the last leg from YYZ-YVR. We were "lucky" enough to get the last two seats on the aircraft in the cockpit of a B767. I know that some "cons" didn't like the cockpit as it was more uncomfortable than a regular seat, but I always thought that any seat (anywhere) was a good seat when you wanted to get home.
Most of the flight was pretty boring once we reached cruising altitude and since I worked in aircraft maintenance and have seen many cockpits, being seated in the cockpit was not too special. What I do remember and has been imprinted in my fond memories is the most breathtaking sunset approach and landing in YVR that I had ever experienced. The pilots seemed to just take it for granted as they see this all the time, but I was most impressed and felt like a little kid once again.
For those that weren't lucky enough to see the B777 that toured the different bases last summer, please click on the image to the left and you will be linked to an interactive 360 deg view of a B777 cockpit. The controls are at the bottom and it's pretty neat. Too bad there's no sunset though!
US Airways said that it will charge economy passengers $25 for a second checked bag on all flights within the US and to/from Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe for travel from May 5 on tickets purchased after Feb. 26.
Bud Liversidge sends us these pictures of a party for Mary Jane Ward.
The party was held at Edmonton during September 1985 with her Air Canada friends.
Lower left: Joanne (Sparrow) Petrin, Mary-Jane Ward, then the server, then Bud Liversidge, Eleanor Wells, Lauretta Chayer.
Left, top to bottom: Brian Granlien, server, Marguerite Fisk, all looking at Mary-Jane Ward.
Left to right: Karen (St. Lawrence) Alksne, Ross Cronin, Mary-Jane Ward, Eleanor Wells, Lauretta Chayer, Brian Granlien, and Marguerite Fisk
Left to right and then down: Karen (St. Lawrence) Alksne, Ross Cronin, Joanne (Sparrow) Petrin, Scott Russell, the late Marie (March) O'Laughlin, the late Mary-Jane Ward, Eleanor Wells, Lauretta Chayer, Brian Granlien, and Marguerite Fisk
Mary-Jane was born on Sept. 10, 1939. This would have been her birthday get-together in 1985. She passed away Dec. 6, 2005 at the age of 66 years.
Sadly, Marie also shown in these pictures passed away some two weeks ago.
Many thanks to Marguerite for identifying everybody!
Meeting of Saint John N.B. staff circa 1949
Notable dignitaries are
- Standing 1st left - Walter Fowler (V.P.Ops)
- 11th from left - Gordon Wood (V.P.Sales)
- 13th from left - Elliot Bolton (V.P.Personnel)
- Sitting at the head table is G.R.McGregor (President)
Sales Management Course circa 1960
- Front row l to r - Roy Miller, Dave Bonnell, Terry McLean, Vince Brimiscombe, Frank MacDonald, Harold Dondenaz, John Perry, Don McLean, Frank Stephens and Dave Gibson
- Back row l to r - Doug Spalding, Harry Scofield, Tom Sandilands, Cec Hodgson, Art Bergum and Bill Donaldson
Musings from "Horizons" magazines
1984 - The new commissary building was officially opened in 1984. We have this photo from Aug 1984.
From September 1984 -
Pictured is Flight Attendant Louis Chong modelling for the Global Expansion brochure.
Film Festival Awards - opening night reception greeters -
From October 1984 -
Cargo terminal at YHZ underway, we have a picture of the design team
Montreal soccer team had a great season in 1984 - here are the guys
LHR commissary created the menu for the new oriental route, and several of the London staff trusted their choice -
1982 - DC-10 C-GCPJ fin 908 c/n 46991 "Empress of Rome" was purchased from Singapore Airlines then sold to Japan Leasing and leased back on Dec 27, 1991. In 1996 the aircraft was returned to Japan Leasing and was taken up by Continental Airlines.
1991 - B767 C-GSCA fin 642 c/n 25121 was delivered to Canadi>n and leased to China Southern in 1993 and returned in May 1998.
1985 - May was when Wardair was awarded service rights to the U.K. receiving permission to operate into London, Prestwick and Glasgow.
Juanita Ollivier has sent us two pictures -
In front of a DC-3 at YVR in 1950
Seen at a CP/BC dinner.
Juanita worked for CPA in YVR before moving to YYZ and T.C.A. in 1952. She has since retired. Juanita's husband, Bert has spent many years in the travel industry, is a columnist for GSA Travel Magazine and is soon to have published his book "Travel's my game".
John Fuller sends us this request
Here in Toronto, around November 07 I was watching a local TV stn, and they were interviewing an Air Canada Pilot who had just published a novel. He explained it was about explaining all that had to be done before a flight takes off, for those that worry when flying. He said he was in the process of upgrading to Captain. I called the TV stn but they said I needed the exact date of the interview, which I don't have. NOW...do you know, or can find out for me the name of the Novel and the author??
Tom Singfield sends us this request
Subject: Trans Canada Air Lines
Some of you will recall the research I am carrying out into the history of aviation in Bermuda for a proposed book.
I was trying to find out about a reported visit of a TCA aircraft to Bermuda in September 1946. Rigorous research by many of you has discounted the use of a North Star to Bermuda that early so that is fine and I am prepared to ignore that story.
Why I am contacting you again is that my co-author has recently returned from Bermuda where he discovered details of an early visit to Bermuda of a TCA aircraft. On 2nd Dec 1946, there was what could be the first TCA flight to BDA. A Lancastrian, registration unknown, routed London - Santa Maria - Bermuda - Montreal to avoid high winds on the northern route. It had five crew including Capt J R Bowker. I have met Bowker's wife in Bermuda and sadly she can not find Bob's logbooks from that time.
If any of you can find further information on this trip then please let me know.
I hope you find this interesting,
From: Ken Williams
Subject: Pictures #1011
Good Day, To add to the pictures of PWA send in by Ken Bjorge allow me to correct and add a few names.
The picture of C-GIPW, At top left on the Airstair is Capt. Roy Reaville. If the picture was taken in 2005, Russ Revel had retired, and was not in the picture.
The fourth picture should read Richard (Dick) Laidman who became PWA President.
The three shown as unidentified are from left: Capt. J.C.S. (Jack) Miles, QCA pilot, and who became Vice -President Flight Ops. PWA, Capt. Jack Crosby, retired from TCA and Chief Pilot when PWA and QCA combined. Capt. Kees Fransbergen, who became PWA Director of Flight Operations.
The cockpit picture is of Capt Bill Campbell.
Incidentally , Capt. Crosby hired me as a F/O in December 1954 when the Dewline airlift started.
Hope this helps.
Note: see NetLetter #1011 for original photo
Roy Reaville sent his information direct to Ken Bjorge who passes them along - Hi Ken, Some corrections for you. regarding one of the pictures (second one down) that was published in the Netletter Issue #1011. Russ Revel passed away in Kansas on March 25, 2002.
The others on the step are Gordon Russell and Roy Reaville. (and here I thought you knew me??) The pilot between Joan Campbell and Wendy Wood is Bryan Rasmussen and the pilot between Gayle Philps (not Philips) and Mary Ann Garbencius is Ed Schnitzer. Bill Pratt is next to Joan Campbell's right. Dave Graham is to Mary Ann's left. Gayle Philps passed away Feb 25, 2008. (Cancer) I'm sure you know that Jack Miles, Jack Crosby and Kees Fransbergen are in the 4th picture down.
Also Capt. Bill Campbell is in the Convair.
"Javifix" sends us this picture, following up on the article in NetLetter nr 1011
I do remember working on L-1011. For some time, as a station attendant on the food trucks, it was very easy to serve the galley. We liked the "military" design by Lockheed. Enclosed another funny picture of the "Tristar", fly-by-wire.
Ted Berrie sent us this photo, but did not identify the airline or year.
Subject: B.C.s 100th
B.C. Centenial celibration old timers, photo taken in the old hanger prop shop (l to r) Gordy Wilson, Lloyd Bailey, Art Wilford, Al Lovoie, Ted Berrie.
From: Dennis Kennedy
Ref Netletter #1010 16 Feb 2008
Here is an update on B737-275 Fin 760 (560AC)
S/N 23283 L/N 1109 (formerly C-GWPW)
This aircraft has returned to Canada and is being leased by Canadian North Airlines. It is now registered as C-GCNS and the fin number remains as 560. The aircraft went into service for Canadian North in December 2007.
From: David Wall
Subject: "New" Routes (In NetLetter nr 1011)
I think the PR people are using "new" when they mean "resumed" AC regularly flew YZ-QB, YZ-XE, and YC-ORD in the past.
Air travel in the Maritimes in the late 30's - A trip report
By Charles Lynch
This was written in the Maritime Airlines plane flying from Halifax to Saint John.
Write in a plane? Sure. You can talk , smoke and even have a sing song if you like in the big Stinson Reliant which gives daily service between the two sister cities.
Behind me a passenger keeps muttering to himself. What a way to travel!" and he means it. Nobody could make this run without becoming a convert. This man brought along a newspaper to read. He hasn't taken his eyes off the view yet, though and if the trip over from Saint John this morning is any gauge, he won't.
One local business man recently said. "if some of these fellows would only forget their foolish prejudices, there wouldn't be room in that plane to hold the crowd." He was right. It is the ultimate in transportation. My overcoat is off, and my shirt is open. No office was ever more comfortable to work in. It's warm- the plane is splendidly heated. The seats which gives accommodations for five - could not be more comfortable.
Pilot Bill Arrowsmith states that we'll be back in Saint John at 4.15. We left at 10.20 this morning. In other words, we did our morning's work in Saint John, had luncheon in Halifax, drove around the city for almost and hour and a half, saw all our relatives there and will be back in Saint John in lots of time to do some work before supper.
Tired? That trip is exhilarating. We are over Minas Strait now, The altitude is almost 6,000 feet. The powerful motor is singing its power anthem. If it should conk out right in the middle of this widest body of water crossed during this flight, pilot Bill knows just the land strip which we can reach without the help of the motor and is always within gliding distance of an emergency field.
The ride is a thrilling experience for the uninitiated. But it wouldn't be much good for the adventurer. The element of danger just doesn't seem to be there at all. This is a convincing display of the fact that air transportation has arrived - it is a part of the life of today
Most of the trip is made at about 6,000 feet, with the air speed showing 120 miles per hour - two miles a minute. A slight scream from the air which is rushing by the windows is the only indication of this speed. The ship is as steady as a rock. The visibility perfect this morning is slightly hazy this afternoon. Those clouds were left behind when we struck out over the water.
Ahead of us is the rugged New Brunswick coastline. Here and there a wisp of smoke goes up from the midst of the forest lands- coming from the lumber camps.
There is a distinct contrast between lake dotted Nova Scotia. Ahead is a white streak cleaving away northward- it is the Saint John River.
The plane is purring down the home stretch like a thoroughbred. It is a fact that no thoroughbred was ever given the treatment which this ship receives. Before each trip, an expert engineer goes over her - and he has to sign a testimonial to the effect that she is airworthy. After every 25 hours of flying, the motor is taken down and checked from top to bottom. Local pilots have only one word to say about this plane " sweet heart".
Ahead of us now is Loch Lomond, gleaming white in the midafternoon sun. To the left is Fundy- bronzely glittering. And, far away but still plainly to be seen, is Nova Scotia. There's the Kennebecasis over to the right and the Saint John across the Kingston Peninsula.
All this means home - back from Halifax. A three day trip? No- just a very pleasant incident in the day's work. The business man in back has now reached the stage where he is kicking himself- that makes him a convert. "To think I could have been doing this for two years" he blusters. Far down the coast is Grand Manan, to the left, the East Saint John breakwater points its finger at Partridge island, Nova Scotia is gone.
"There's a crowd out at the lake,." Pilot Bill points. At less than 1,000 feet, we have just skimmed over them. Now out around the city- 500 feet down to 300- talk about a thrill. Over the lake again, and then her nose points at Milledgeville, there's a small crowd out to see us come in.
Picture credit - Heritage Resources, Saint John NB
Circling around the airport, throttle down, crank the stabilizer control, open her just a little. There's the field. We're in- just like that. Not a jar- I didn't even have to stop typing. It's not five hours since we weighted in and took off for Halifax. Out of the plane and into a car- two hours after talking to an aunt in Halifax. I was able to deliver her regards to an amazed aunt in Saint John
A handwritten note by his widow on this newspaper clipping
"When Bill was pilot for Maritime Airlines 1936-37-38-39"
Who was Bill Arrowsmith? Born and brought up in the Saint John Area, he obtained his pilots license in 1934 at the age of
18. Two years later he joined Maritime Airlines, first flying the Travelair seaplane and then the Stinson Reliant and was the Chief Pilot.
All his trips were not as routine as the above.
Atlantic Canada Aviation Museum (ACAM) - Rob MacIlreith has a story and pictures of the Travelair destroyed in a take off accident, which occurred on the North West arm of the Halifax harbour in July 1937
It can be found in their 2004 newsletter
Bill left Maritime Airlines in 1939 to serve 6 years in the RCAF. In 1951, he was appointed the first Airport manager for the new YSJ Airport.
A note on his scrapbook, which his wife had donated to the Saint John Airport, indicated that he left his Airport job in Sept 1952 for an interview in Montreal with TCA . After 25 years, he retired from TCA/Air Canada in 1977.
Last December, YVR introduced a new service to allow arriving passengers to post their name on a screen in the public greeting area to let their party know they've arrived. This new YVR Greeter Information Board is the first of its kind in Canada.
Here's how it works:
Once passengers clear the primary inspection line-the row of booths where Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Customs Officers check your passport-and enter the Customs Hall, they can go to the 24-hour Customer Information Counter, centrally located between the baggage carousels, and ask to have their name displayed on the YVR Greeter Information Board in the public area, where their greeter will be waiting. Passengers can tell the Customer Care Representative at the counter how they would like their name displayed and where they are arriving from, and this information is added to the board.
Tony D'Costa sends this follow up
regarding a query on duty free purchases for employees/retirees on flights
Subject: Discount on In-Flight Duty Free Sales
Just to let you know that I just returned from an overseas trip and YES, the 20% discount does apply to employees and retirees, on ALL Duty Free products carried on board. The Flight Directors were not able to tell me as to when this benefit might terminate, but they enter the information with the employee number (one must present their ID Card) in their machine and it automatically calculates a 20% discount on the items purchased.
I wish Air Canada would enter this information on the appropriate page in the aeronet portal.
Thanks for all your help.
New ZED agreement signed with Delta Airlines Employee travel has successfully negotiated a ZED agreement with Delta Airlines replacing the current ID90 agreement. This ZED agreement is effective on the 1st of March, which means that you will be able to process your ZM paper tickets for yourself, spouse, dependent children under 24 and ZH for your parents directly on the Employee Travel Website as of that date.
Due to the rapid escalation of fuel prices, the Cruises Lines listed below will be implementing a fuel surcharge as shown.
1. Princess, Carnival, Holland America, Seabourn, Costa, and Cunard
These cruise lines all have announced a fuel supplement of $5 per passenger, per day, for all voyages departing on or after February 1, 2008. The supplement applies to the first and second passengers in a stateroom up to a maximum of $70 per person per voyage, for both new bookings and those that are currently under deposit or fully paid.
2. Cruise West
Cruise West will be adding a fuel surcharge of $12 per guest per cruise night for each of their cruise itineraries. This is a capped amount, applies for all of their vessels and is effective Monday, November 12, 2007.
3. MSC Cruises
MSC Cruise Lines will implement a $6.00 per person per day fuel surcharge. They will protect all existing bookings on all voyages that have names and are under deposit by November 30, 2007. The fuel surcharge will only apply to new bookings made December 1, 2007 and onwards and will be applicable only on cruise departures after February 1, 2008. In addition, the surcharge will only be applicable to the first two guests in a stateroom.
4. NCL Corporation
Effective on all new NCL and NCL America bookings made on or after December 1, 2007, the fuel supplement will be $7 per person per day for the first and second guests in a stateroom and $3 per person per day for any additional guests in the same stateroom.
5. Oceania Cruises
Oceania Cruises will be implementing a cruise fuel surcharge of $7.00 per guest per day for all currently published sailings unless the reservation is paid in full by December 1, 2007.
6. Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Regent Seven Seas Cruises has instituted a fuel surcharge of $7.50 per person, per day for all 2008 bookings that are not paid in full by Dec. 1, 2007.
7. Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise Lines
There is a fuel supplement of $5 per guest per day for sailings that depart on or after February 1, 2008. The supplement will apply only to the first and second guests in each stateroom and will not exceed $70 per person, per sailing for both new bookings and those that are currently under deposit or fully paid.
8. Silversea Cruises
Silversea Cruises will assess a $10 fuel surcharge per person per day effective on all new cruise bookings for 2008 voyages made on or after November 14, 2007. The surcharge is applicable to all guests in the suite. Reservations made prior to November 14, 2007 will be exempt from the surcharge.