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NetLetter #1351 | September 26, 2016
The NetLetter
Nordair CF-NAW B737-212

Nordair B737-212 CF-NAW (in YUL)

Dear Reader,

Welcome to the NetLetter, an Aviation based newsletter for Air Canada, TCA, CPAir, Canadian Airlines and all other Canadian based airlines that once graced the Canadian skies.

The NetLetter was created in 1995 by Vesta Stevenson (RIP) and Terry Baker and is published on the second and fourth weekend of each month. If you are interested in Canadian Aviation History, and vintage aviation photos, especially as it relates to Trans-Canada Air Lines, Air Canada, Canadian Airlines International and their constituent airlines, then we're sure you'll enjoy this newsletter. Our website is located at


ACFN/NetLetter News

We are still in the process of creating a special "archive" related website in a dedicated area of the ACFamily Network for those who would like to view the past issues of Between Ourselves, Horizons and other archives that have been scanned by Terry over the past few years. I will update you regarding this subject in our next NetLetter (in two weeks) as I should have more in place by then.

Thanks for your patience,


AC News

Air Canada News

Air Canada to Launch Non-Stop Montreal-Shanghai Flights

First Boeing 787 Dreamliner service from Montreal

MONTREAL, Sept. 23, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today announced the introduction of daily year-round flights from Montreal to Shanghai, China beginning February 16, 2017. This marks Air Canada's first direct service to China from Montreal as well as the introduction of state-of-the-art Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft on flights departing from Montreal. Tickets will be available for purchase on and through travel agents on September 28, 2016.

See full article here

Air Canada Begins Construction on a New Hangar at its Toronto Pearson Global Hub

$90-million state-of-the-art facility will cover an area equal to seven hockey rinks

TORONTO, Sept. 22, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today broke ground on a new $90-million aircraft hangar project at Toronto Pearson Airport that will support the airline's ongoing expansion of its Toronto global hub. Once complete, the new Hangar 5 building will cover an area equal to seven professional hockey rinks and accommodate five aircraft at one time.

See full article here

Air Canada is the Official Airline of the World Cup of Hockey.


Pratt & Whitney has a 15-year contract with Air Canada to provide PW1500G repair/overhaul for its 75 CS300s on order/option.

tmb ac403 u2Air Canada Jetz launched in September 2001. The fleet consists of Airbus A319 & A320 aircraft configured to 58 Business Class seats to satisfy the travel needs of professional sports teams, entertainment groups and corporate clients.

Pictured is Fin # 403 painted for Irish rockers U2 '360' Tour. Click Here for Jetz page on the AC web site.

JAZZ (Air Canada Express) plans February 5th 2017 to begin daily Vancouver-Dallas/Fort Worth with 75 seat wifi equipped CRJ-705 aircraft. (source SpeedNews Sept. 9/16)

Readers Photos

Reader Submitted Photos

tmb yvr 1980Pat Barnes sent us this of YVR in 1980

Kelly Smith has sent us this information -

tmb link across canadaI enjoyed reading in NL #1349 the newspaper articles about Captain Walter Fowler's inaugural air express flight into Moncton so I thought I would send along the same for my Dad's inaugural passenger flight into Halifax which I believe was April 16, 1941.

As promised a while back, attached are a few photos of the TCA hangars in Winnipeg, Manitoba my Dad had from circa 1939 and a couple of the R-100 at St. Hubert , Quebec circa 1930.

Kelly M. Smith (Son of Captain Roger L. Smith)

 tmb final link across canada 1  tmb tca ywg 1939 03
 tmb tca ywg 1939 01  tmb tca ywg 1939 02
 tmb r100 at st hubert circa 1930  tmb r100 at st hubert circa 1930 1


TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery

airbc tt 9941994 - May -AirBC timetable from Arthur Ng collection.

AirBC was formed in 1980 and became an Air Canada Connector in 1987 when AC purchased 85% of the regional airline.

It was consolidated with Air Nova, Air Ontario, Air Alliance and Canadian Regional Airlines into Air Canada Jazz in 2002.

From the "Between Ourselves" magazine issued July 1943

The caption read -

tmb newfoundland airmail stampThis is Newfoundland's first airmail stamp. In the background is St. John's, the picturesque harbour city and capital of Newfoundland, and over it, of course, hovers a Lodestar. Air Transportation has marked the beginning of new progress for Newfoundland, a development in which TCA is playing a vital part.

Issue dated March 1971

tmb first b747 deliveryWheeling into the gate at Montreal’s International Airport, the company's first Boeing 747 CF-TOA fin 301 c/n 20013 as seen following its delivery flight from Seattle on February 26th under the command of Captain Bill Benson. Completing the flight deck were Captains Wendy Reid and Eric Jokinen.


tmb first b747 delivery familyA Family Affair - When Captain Bill Benson brought the company's first Boeing 747 into Montreal on its delivery flight from Seattle, his family was present to bid him welcome. Seen in the 747 cockpit photo are 10 year old Leslie, 15 year old Mark and Mrs. "Casey" Benson.

The third annual general meeting of the Properties and Facilities branch was held in June at Montebello, Quebec.

tmb p n f action meetingA three day event which brought a lively discussion under the theme of "Action v Reaction". In our photo we have, back row from the left: Fraser O'Shaughnessy, Mervyn Powell, Hugh McMillan, George Smith, Vic Findlay and Lyle Raverty.

Middle row from the left: Steve Clark, Jim Donaldson, Bill Nagy, Conor Megannety, Dave Heton and Garry Millar.

Front row from the left: Ralph Drabinsky, Gail Salter, Dan Moss, Manuel Osorio, Len Martell, Betty Christie, Bob Carpenter, Carl Gyra ?, ?, ? Hucato, Dominic Fiore, Frank Bogert, Denis Midgely and John Harper. (Can anyone supply the missing names - eds)

From the "Horizons" magazine issued June 1980.

Preparing for the digital avionics.

tmb avionic digital courseChanges in technology will see digital avionic systems incorporated into the next generation of aircraft. The company's new aircraft will carry several dozen micro-computers to aid flight crews in the performance of their duties. In preparation for the future, Maintenance Technical Training is conducting courses on the micro-processors for the avionics shop personnel. Here are the group from the #5 course.

Back row from the left: Bert Widdop, Bill Sikma, Jim Mooney, Helmut Beyeler, Paul Coates, Chris Gateway, Louis Maheux and Marius Martineau.

Front row from the left: Instructor Barry Wilson, Les McMahon, Roger Desgagne, Clive Bebbington, Murray Richards, Bob Smith and Michel Stucky.

The Antigua staff shown here are,

tmb antigua staffFrom the left: Donna O'Donoghue, Cordell Isiah, Maurice Antonio, Blondelle Luke, Winston Gordon and Lucinda Cumberbatch. Missing from the photo are Jackie Challenger and Les Nanton.

Alan's Space

Alan's Space

Alan RustSolar plane makes history after completing round-the-world trip

(This is a few months old but was not promoted too much in the news at the time)

July 26, 2016 - Solar Impulse 2 has completed the first round-the-world flight by a solar-powered aeroplane, after touching down in Abu Dhabi early on Tuesday.

The final leg of the feat, aimed at showcasing the potential of renewable energy, was a bumpy one, with turbulence driven by hot desert air leaving the solo pilot, Bertrand Piccard, fighting with the controls.

The plane, which has a wingspan wider than a Boeing 747 and carries more than 17,000 solar cells on its wings, began the circumnavigation in March 2015 in Abu Dhabi. It has since crossed both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans using no fossil fuel and has spent more than 23 days in the air.

Click here for full story and click on image below (or here) for more photos.

Solar Impulse


CPAir, Canadi>n People Gallery

CPAir/Canadian People Galler
1986 - June 15th - Pacific Western inaugurates flights to Ottawa.

From the "CPAir News - News Alert" magazine issue dated January 1986.

The headline was "Airline's dynamic expansion continues" with the announcement that the first ever non-stop service by a North American carrier to the Peoples Republic of China to be launched April 29th 1986 when Canadian Pacific Air Lines inaugurates a new direct route between Vancouver and Shanghai, utilizing DC-10-30 equipment. We are not newcomers to the Pacific nor the China market. We have been flying the Canada-China route for more than 36 years.

The acquisition of Nordair adds (10) B737-200's our fleet. An agreement has been made with GPA Group in Shannon, Ireland to sell (3) B737-300 and involves the acquisition of additional used B-737-200 from the GPA Group.  Five B737-300's on order for delivery in 1987-88 has been cancelled with Boeing.

Located in the "PWA Flightlines" magazine issue dated June 1986.

tmb pwa crc calgaryOfficial opening of the PWA Calgary Reservations facilities June 18th 1986 incorporating Calgary Reservations Sales and the new Central Reservations Control.

Here we have a photo where Mike Waters and Eleanor McArthur cut the cake that serves to officially open the facility.

tmb pwa morrisJohn Morris, Calgary Reservations demonstrates the new terminal in the Reservations Training Centre for Gord Monthey, agent from Regina Ticket Counter.

tmb pwa bradleyNew Reservations Agents in training are, from the left: Donald Bradley, Sandra McNally and Mobina Jamal.


Wayne's WingsWayne's Wings

wayne albertson articlesNordair’s First Boeing 737 – A Jet for All Seasons 

The importance of Nordair’s place in Canadian aviation history is certainly worth noting. The Quebec based airline operated from 1947 until 1987 when it was acquired by Canadian Pacific Air Lines. Nordair pioneered and developed many routes and services during its fourty year history that expanded air service to remote areas in Canada. I also think that it must have been the first airline in Canada with a bilingual name.

My own first airplane ride was on a Nordair B737 from Montreal to Freeport, Bahamas in 1975. Alan began his career as an aircraft technician with Nordair before joining Air Canada. When I mentioned my topic for this issue, Alan sent me the following comment and link to a very informative YouTube video.

“The B737's operated by Nordair were heavily utilized sometimes traveling from the Arctic to a southern charter destination on the same day being converted from Cargo/PAX to all PAX using quick conversion kits.” Click Here to watch the fifteen-minute video which demonstrates the conversion Alan refers to.tmb Nordair CF NAB

The aircraft in the video is registration CF-NAB (Boeing line number 84) was the first B737 delivered to Nordair on October 28, 1968. It was absorbed into the CP Air and later C.A.I.L. fleets (as C-FNAB) in 1987. It was acquired by TAT (Transport Aérien Transrégional) of France in 1989 and remained in service (as F-GGPA) until TAT ceased operating in 1995. After a brief lease to Air Asia it was acquired by Air Méditerranée (as F-GOAF) in 1997 where it seems to have still been in service until 2005. shows the aircraft currently stored in Romania. Click Here for another YouTube video of the same aircraft taking off in Air Méditerranée livery (I have not been able to confirm the airport or date).

While researching this article I came across Nordair timetable and route maps at

Reader's Feedback

Reader's Feedback

Hugh MacCallum has sent us this information -

I joined the Pionairs October 2015. I worked for AirBC/ACJazz/Jazz April 1979 thru to retirement September 30, 2005, initially as a float plane pilot based at CYZT/Port Hardy, then as a Dispatcher, then a Customer Svc Agt at CYYJ.

My interest in aviation began May 1961-’62 in the Canadian Arctic on DEW Line supply ships based at Tuktoyaktuk, NWT — a Bell G2 was carried on one of the LST’s to find leads in the ice pack.

My Dad gave me a 35mm Argus camera summer 1962 resulting in taking photos of aircraft (i.e.) DC-3 & 4, the Bell helicopter. From 1962 through 2012 I took 460 aircraft photos & then had a website created (by an International photographer living here in Sidney, whom I met in 2012) to display the photos c/w relative history. Click Here to visit Hugh's site. 

An inquiry from one of those viewing my site resulted in my research coming across your NetLetter. (NetLetter nr 1201 mentioned information on the Avro York - eds)

One of the pics is of the Avro York at The Pas, Manitoba (refer Gallery 1, images 13 & 14). My time with AirBC, included 3 years on the YVR ramp as an airside shuttlebus driver from CP Gate 19 to Twin Otters parked on the North Apron. Thus many pics of anything arriving departing during 1984-87 — refer Gallery 7, page 1,image 10, and pages 2, 3 & 4. 

I would think that many personnel from the amalgamated AC family would be interested.

Betty Draper has sent this cutting -

National Air Line sought. (by Canadian Press) Montreal, January 17th, 1933.

Stated to be the largest conference of airways officials ever to take place in Canada, a meeting of the officers of Canadian Airways, Limited, opened here today. Officers from Winnipeg and Vancouver were included in the delegates. James Richardson, president of Canadian Airways, presided.

The meeting is to discuss national air problems thoroughly and consider the feasibility of linking Canadian Airways' routes into a national network. An aggressive air policy may be the outcome of today's meeting, it was stated.

In NL #1348, Robert Pelley requested help in locating information regarding a flight between St. John's and Victoria in 1974.

Neil Burton has responded with this suggestion -

There was a “Great Belvedere Air Race of 1973”. It began in Mountain view, Ontario, on June 23rd, 1973 and ended in Fort Langley, B.C.

Again on June 30th, 1974, another race “Great Canadian Air Dash of 1974” was held from Montreal and ended in Vancouver, B.C., Thursday, July 11th, 1974.

Is there a possibility Wayne Tuck and Craig Loweys joined these races?

Neil Burton

Re: Bristol Freighter -- Maritime Central Airways owned one aircraft that crashed at Site 30 (Hall Beach), killing all three crewmen. Apparently the cargo (a small military truck) broke free from its tie-downs and rolled forward and rearward with disastrous results, finally stalling the aircraft and it crashed just off shore at that base during building of the DEW Line. I flew with MCA during '56 and '57.

Cecil Kipfer (retired Captain, Air Canada)


In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s I was in CPAL Flight Dispatch at Montreal Dorval Airport. We were quite good friends with the Trans-Canada/Air Canada Flight Dispatchers who worked in an office a few doors away, Ozzie Candy, Frank al. 

They told a (perhaps apocryphal) story of a Bristol 170 Freighter enroute YUL/LGA. When in range of LGA the flight crew asked for landing instructions. The instructions were forthcoming from LGA tower, and as the 170 turned on final approach the LGA tower operator acknowledged with “gear down and locked”.

The TCA/AC flight crew responded with ‘gear down and welded’....

Bill Cameron (CP Air Retired 1986)

David Wall writes-

I enjoyed Wayne's article about the old freighter and it brought back a memory. While the Brits built some of the prettiest airplanes they also were responsible for some of the ugliest, the Bristol Freighter fell into the latter category.

When I flew into JFK as a Viscount F/O in the '60s there was a tale in the lore of the Bristol Freighter about an unidentified comment made on VHF (JFK Ground) "Hey Trans-Canada, did you build it yourself?"

David Wall

Odds and Ends

Odds and Ends

1937 - Imperial Airways of the U.K. arrived in Montreal from Southampton, U.K. to inaugurate trans-Atlantic service to connect with Trans-Canada Air Lines.

A TCA aircraft, piloted by Lewis Leigh and H.T. Lewis was the first to use the Calgary airport in late January 1939.

Prompted by the article in “Wayne's Wings” in NetLetter #1349, we unearthed an e-mail of a personal experience from Bill Norberg (RIP) which we received in 1998 -

Trans-Canada Air Lines plans flights to the Caribbean

Once the North Star aircraft arrived on the scene TCA had the fleet capacity to expand its operations. The North Atlantic service was in operation and plans were being made to start services south to the Caribbean. To explore these possibilities in greater depth a familiarization flight was planned for the fall of 1948. A North Star with a team of airline specialists was to head south and touch down at all the main Caribbean Islands as far south as Port of Spain, Trinidad.

I was a Line Maintenance Shift Foreman at the time responsible for Radio, Electronics and Instruments and was selected to accompany this flight as technical support. I was quite naturally thrilled at the thought and immediately went about getting the necessary passport and all the medical shots needed for tropical areas. I was on the midnight shift when all this readiness was going on and after completing my shift in the morning would go over to the Dorval Medical Clinic and get my daily batch of shots from Dr. Violette and his nurses before going home to get some sleep. Some of the shots in those days were rather unpleasant and after one session I spent most of the day in a state.

My wife told me that all I was worried about was that my insurance premium hadn't been paid. My excitement over this trip was short lived however when my place on the team was taken by a chap from the office named Tammy Johnson. I was disappointed but it was probably the best decision. The aircraft completed its tour successfully and TCA started its flights to the Caribbean which have proven to be so successful. The ending to the flight however was rather interesting. As I recall it F.M. McGregor was on the flight, maybe even flying the aircraft. When it was returning it was flight planned into Dorval and as I heard it, Customs Branch were all ready for this one. I guess the flight got wind of those plans and at the last minute it was diverted to Toronto where it cleared customs without any problems.

The flight then flew domestically to Dorval from Toronto. When it landed at Dorval it taxied directly to Hangar # 5, the hangar doors were open and the aircraft taxied directly in to the hangar with the doors closing behind it. I believe F.M. McGregor had his offices in the hangar #5 annex.


Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

Terry BakerSuper deal from PERX interline - 

For an occasion as auspicious as this start of our 26th year, a particularly fantastic deal seems to be in order, and happily we are here to deliver it with a fabulous 10 night cruise from just $1 a night! Heck for just $2 more a night you can upgrade to a balcony!

Taxes are extra of course, unfortunately we can't give those away (they're $296 on this sailing), but even so "all in" you can cruise for $30 a night! This is a super itinerary as well. It doesn't do the Horn, but instead is a best of Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina, peak Southern Hemisphere, summer sun splashed beauty that is guaranteed to warm you up before the long cold winter ahead!

Norwegian Cruise Line | Norwegian Sunperx logo
10-night South America - Rio de Janeiro to Buenos Aires
December 13, 2016 In/Out/Balcony $10/20/30*
[Rio de Janeiro (Overnight), Buzios, Ilha Grande, Santos, Punta del Este, Montevideo, Buenos Aires (Overnight)]
*taxes & fees $296 additional

Click here for link to this special deal (login for rates)

That seems like a pretty sweet way to kick off the next 25 years, so how about you join in on all the fun today and...
MAKE YOUR PERX WORK by calling us @ 800-200-7170
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DARGAL offers for friends and family of airline employees qualify for big savings too!dargal logo
Travel with an Interliner, various dates available. 

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Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars per person (based on double occupancy).

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tmb cheap flight 1351We found this cartoon in the August edition of the LAX Pionairs newsletter.

Terry Baker, Alan Rust, Wayne Albertson

Terry Baker | Alan Rust | Wayne Albertson
NetLetter Staff for 2016
(you can read our bios at

E&OE - (errors and omissions excepted) - The historical information as well as any other information provided in the "NetLetter" is subject to correction and may have changed over time. We do publish corrections (and correct the original article) when this is brought to our attention.

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