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.
We go way back for this edition of "Between Ourselves"
Issue dated March 1943
Aviation history? No but the stock-in-trade of our winged misses, the stewardesses. Initial entrance to their exclusive company calls for rigid specifications of age, height, and weight. Only registered nurses need apply. And only the unmarried. From the ranks of the many applicants that make themselves known to our Supervisory Stewardesses, Miss M. Dickson and Miss M. A. Halstead, through
personal interviews, hand-pick the final few who are to make the jaunt to Winnipeg for a month of initiation and instruction. So you see, our girls are nearly as tailor-made as the trim uniforms they wear. Chosen carefully to fit an important job, they fit it well, making perhaps the closest contact of all with the public we serve, and identifying our T.C.A. name with good service and good-will.
Below, you see the second largest stewardess class in the history of T.C.A., assembled for their graduation dinner on February 11th. With lectures, familiarization flights, and exams all behind them, they have now been posted across Canada to assume their new duties.
In October a meeting of Traffic and Operations staff was held in Winnipeg. In General Operations officers.
On the steps of Winnipeg's Fort Garry Hotel.
The Trans-Canada Air Lines Joint Co-operative Committee was set up in 1937, and here are the 1943 members.
Here we have the 1942-43 Curling Champions of the T.C.A.R.A.
On March 2nd they concluded a triumphant march with their
eleventh successive victory , as against no defeats.
Bear vs Airplane (thanks Rob)
Bear attack 2009
(We're not sure if this is true or not, or whether the aircraft ever flew, but it's a good story anyhow...)
Apparently a bear attacked this plane while parked in a remote field up in Alaska. The owner had not cleaned out the inside after a long fishing trip and the bear smelled it.
He had 2 new tires, 3 cases of Duct Tape and several rolls of cellophane delivered. Then went about repairing the plane so he could fly it home.
Gutsy, to say the least. Or stupid.
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.
Musings from the "Info Canadi>n" magazine
Issue December 17th, 1990
Issue dated April 10th 1991
These Melbourne employees show their reaction to find the initial listing on the Pegasus with code-sharing with Qantas.
Issue dated April 24th 1991
Canadian suspended flights between Canada and San Juan, Puerto Rico April 27th
During the scanning of some old copies of "Between Ourselves" we came across an article regarding Keflavik which mentioned Gordie Aitchison as having been posted there, so we asked him about it and this was his response.
My,My, you are going back a long way! I was not aware of such an article and frankly I can' even remember reading "Between Ourselves" in 1949!! Must be something to do with age! Yes, I was in Keflavik in 1948 and I was there because I was stationed there from perhaps March thru September of that year and a very interesting and happy time it was for me.
I joined TCA PIK in November 1947 and about the end of that year one of the few Canadian staff remaining at PIK was posted up to Keflavik (who was there before that, I know not). However I understand that his performance may have been found to be wanting because two months later, Davy Davidson, stalwart if ever there was one, was asked to go up and relieve him. However, Davy was shortly required down in London so a month later, March. At this time, I was asked to go and join him in Keflavik to which I agreed subject to the proviso that I would be relieved by end September when I wanted to be back in Prestwick for my wedding. The Company meanwhile had been searching for a manager and by
mid-April he arrived and Davy departed leaving me with the new manager, Gus Campbell, Licensed engineer, and George Anthony mechanic, these last three all being Canadians. The new manager, Bill Russell was a grounded First Officer, a very fine fellow, with a wife and a very young daughter back in Montreal, both of whom he missed terribly, and in addition he was far from being a well man and by mid-August, after already having been hospitalized twice. He returned to Montréal leaving Gus and myself in joint charge of the station. To assist me, a further member from PIK was posted in, one Al Gallacher, a few years my senior in age who had been a Wing-Commander with RAF transport Command, latterly in the Far East, and a character if ever there was one with stories to tell of court martial from personal experience. Shortly after his arrival, a Lockheed Hudson appeared on the airfield, having been recently been purchased as war-surplus by a local Icelander.
The owner had somehow heard that Al had flown Hudsons during the war and asked him to teach him to fly this machine, to which Al agreed. However Al wanted to do a local test flight first and asked me to be his 2nd dickie, an invitation I accepted (having been a Fleet Air Arm pilot I was not unaware of the perils of aviation!). Gus had also been approached to look after the maintenance of the aeroplane but after a very short inspection, declared that he wouldn't touch it with a bargepole!! Shortly thereafter, we did the test flight quite uneventfully and landed without incident while Gus, who had tried to dissuade us from this venture had been visualizing how to word the signal to Montreal in the event that the entire operations staff at Keflavik failed to return!
When I left at the end of September as planned, Al was still continuing to take the owner for flying lessons and since I bumped into him again many years later, I am forced to the conclusion that the flying course was successfully completed without injury or fatality!.
At around the same time as Bill Russell had to leave, George Anthony's period of duty at Keflavik expired and he was replaced by a mechanic from the overhaul shop at Winnipeg. This turned out to be a disaster. He knew the engines inside and out but nothing of the rest of the aircraft and had no experience of trouble-shooting, an essential requirement for a line-station mechanic. Despite valiant efforts by Gus to tutor him, there was apparently little progress and both parties were unhappy. Efforts to resolve the situation on my way home via Dorval by approaching a higher level of management came to naught due to Company/Union contracts which were apparently unbreachable. Seniority was king and suitability of absolutely no account. A very unfortunate situation.
(We will continue this saga in another NetLetter, stay tuned! - eds)
He'll be gone for a few more weeks...