After the last newsletter, I got the same question from several people: “What on earth are you doing in Dawson City, Yukon?” Researching aviation history, of course!
From late September to December 21st I was travelling around the Yukon (and Inuvik, NWT) as writer-in-residence of the Berton House programme. It was an incredibly enjoyable and productive time and I look forward to getting back ‘up there’ for more research as soon as possible. It doesn’t hurt I’ve been promised rides in a Jetranger helicopter, Fleet Canuck, and Beech Staggerwing! I’m working on an article about the last three months’ research and travel for the Journal, but in the meantime feel free to visit my blog, www.danicanuck.com, for a few stories and photos.
Now as I sit back at my desk in Edmonton, I have time to reflect on how far the CAHS has come in 2010 and how far we want to go next year with the Journal, convention, and our growing online community. I want to thank the other executive and board members for their energy and dedication as we move forward. I especially want to thank you – members, partners, and corporate sponsors – for your interest in all things aviation, and your support as we celebrate and preserve that heritage.
Best Wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year!
CAHS National President
Hopefully many of you already have the Summer 2010 issue in your hands – I just got mine in the mail yesterday! The Journal editorial team is hard at work on the Fall 2010 edition and if all goes well it should follow quickly.
In that mailing you should have also received a note from me. Part of that refers to a donation campaign and contest. We've extended the draw deadline to January 31st, so please donate early and often!
Book Reviewers Sought
We want to remind you that you can connect with us online through our Facebook group, “Canadian Aviation Historical Society (National) and I welcome you to “friend" me (Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail) as well.
I have been faithfully tweeting as CanAvHistSoc on Twitter, a great way to get bite-sized updates to members and the public about our activities, as well as re-send relevant news about aviation and its history. Come follow us!
We're still working on rich features and content for the website and once this is all in place you'll be the first to know!
Reminder: for those of you keen to reserve your accommodations, we have a block of rooms booked at the Chateau Nova Hotel and Suites (www.chateaunovahoteledmonton.ca), just up the road from the Alberta Aviation Museum. We've secured a special rate, too: approximately $97 for a single queen room and $103 for a double queen room (taxes included). When you reserve, please quote the group name CAHS and number 576.
Vancouver will be holding its next meeting and AGM Tuesday, January 11th and all are welcome. Keith Wade will give a slide presentation on flying boats and amphibians which is sure to provide lots of eye candy.
Manitoba’s next meeting (7 p.m. on January 27th) will feature an evening with Dick Bourgeois-Doyle who wrote a biography of Elsie MacGill “Queen of the Hurricanes.” Copies of his book, Her Daughter the Engineer, will be available for purchase and autographs.
Also on Thursday, January 27th at 7:30 p.m. is the Ottawa chapter’s meeting. Gather in the Bush Theatre of the Canada Aviation and Space Museum to hear Rob Erdos speak on flying Vintage Wing’s recently restored Westland Lysander!
New Brunswick: Harold Wright, historian and director of the NB Turnbull chapter (along with committee members Boyd Trites, Pierre Vachon, and Warren McKim) was able to get the province to declare the former Saint John Municipal Airport a Provincial Historic site. Congrats all around! For more on this achievement, click here.
NB Wellness, Culture and Sport Minister Trevor Holder with Arthur Irving Jr. and several M. Gerald Teed students unveiled a commemorative plaque giving Saint John Municipal Airport Provincial Historic Site status.
After the last newsletter I got a note from Col. Chris Hadfield, possibly the CAHS’s most famous member! He sent out the following invitation: “If anyone wants to follow along through spaceflight training, Soyuz pilot training, and the 6-month spaceflight itself, I send updates daily on my Facebook page. All the best from Star City, Russia!”
Another happy connection happened on Facebook as well. I always find it fascinating to know who the other CAHS members are and where they hail from. Larry Knechtel obliged my curiousity by sharing the following:
“I currently live in Seattle, Washington and work as a Boeing 777 Captain for United Airlines. I've been a member of the CAHS since I was in Grade 9 - way back when (Member #854). I'm a 58-year-old "Old Timer" now and fortunately my dear wife of nearly 30 years is very tolerant of my love of old airplanes and aviation history.”
CAHF 2011 Induction Updates
More details have come to us about the 2011 inductees into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame. In addition to our very own Bill Wheeler, the following individuals will be honoured:
Richard W. (Dick) Ryan for his service in both World Wars, as well as his founding of the Moose Jaw Flying Club and Prairie Airways Ltd. during the interwar years, and his leadership in Canadian Pacific Airlines post-war. [CAHF historian and CAHS member John Chalmers would like to thank Tim Dube for his assistance regarding Ryan’s details]
John W. Crichton, president and CEO of NAV CANADA since 1997, and heavily involved in modernizing Canada’s civil Air Navigation System. He has also been the president of the Air Transport Association of Canada and executive VP of First Air.
Hollinger Ungava Transport will be honoured as a Belt of Orion Member (a designation the CAHS also holds!).
Vancouver President Jerry Vernon reminded me that the Ice Pilots NWT TV series starts up its second season Wednesday, January 12th so check out your local listings for exact times. For more info on the show go to their website and you can watch previously aired episodes at the History Television Canada website.
The International Challenger Owners Association (ICOA Canada) Winter Weekend Rendez-Vous is happening Feburary 4th to 6th at the historic Chateau Montebello in Quebec. There will be lots of time to socialize as well as hangar flying sessions on Saturday. Vintage Wings will also try its best to fly in a ski-equipped Tiger Moth! For more info, click here.
ArtFlight Dates Announced! The Canadian Aviation and Space Museum (CASM) in Ottawa announced the theme for Art Flight 2011 would be "Wings & Water" to commemorate the 100th anniversary of J.A.D. McCurdy's attempt to fly from Key West, Florida, to Havana, Cuba. Please note the following 2011 dates:
March 13th - deadline for entries
April 3rd - notification of artists
April 17th - latest date for arrival at CASM of selected works
May 5 - official opening of ArtFlight at CASM
Preserve and Celebrate!
The Vice-Chair of the Squadron Sponsoring Committee (SSC) for 386 (Komox) Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Cadets, in the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island is looking for material that can be used for recruiting. The material will be directed to potential cadets, but also for parents and potential volunteers. They have several examples of former male air cadets who have done well in life – Gen Natynczyk, Chris Hadfield, Rick Mercer, and others. They would like to be able to balance the names of the men with those of women who are former air cadets and have done well. They are aware of LCol Maryse Carmichael, now CO of 431 AD Sqn and a former Snowbirds pilot, but no others at this point.
The Alberta Women's Memory Project (AWMP) is digitizing original historical materials that document the history of women in Alberta. They will be made available to students and the public on their website: http://awmp.athabascau.ca
While I was thankfully spared the legendary mosquitoes of the north (apparently they carry off unsuspecting tourists), it has been Mossie fever on the internet lately:
Calgary Mosquito Society Wins the Battle
The CMS – with Richard De Boer at the helm – has been lobbying tirelessly for three years to retain the local Mosquito and Hurricane. At last month’s Calgary city council meeting they were victorious and are now shifting their focus to restoring these aircraft. To learn more, please visit Trevor McTavish’s new website and read the following CBC story.
B.C.’s Timber Terror
Victoria Air Maintenance in North Saanich, B.C. is currently restoring a Mosquito as well. Click here for information and to see a video of the project.
France's ¾ scale Mossie has been burning up the blogosphere and regular websites alike. Here are a couple to give you the scoop: EAA News and the French team's own site.
New Zealand Project with Canadian Parts
Alan Rust of the Pionairs (and our webmaster) wrote the following on November 24, 2010: "The restoration of a flyable de Havilland Mosquito is on track for completion in spring 2011. With remains rescued from a Canadian farm, the aircraft is undergoing an extensive rebuild in New Zealand and would be the only flying copy of this WW II fighter-bomber in the world." For more information, please click here.
Thanks to our Partners
I'd like to take a moment to thank a few of the partners who've been supporting us and spreading the word about the CAHS:
Vintage Wings mentioned the CAHS not once but twice in their last Vintage News edition. Check out pages one and three in the left-hand column.
The Rockcliffe Flying Club in Ottawa, Ont. was also kind enough to post our membership notice on its site and the January issue of COPA Flight has some CAHS content. Thanks folks!
Frederick “Jeff” Jeffery
(CAHS member since 1996)
In early December Jeff passed away at North York General Hospital after a brief illness. He was 86 years old.
Born in Vancouver, B.C., he proudly served his country in the Second World War as a pilot with the RCAF on 432 "Leaside" Squadron, No. 6 Group, Bomber Command. According to his Toronto Star obituary, he “joined the RCAF at age 18 and completed his Tour of Operations on Christmas Eve 1944 at age 20.”
George Mitchell brought Jeff’s passing to my attention, reminding me that “he was instrumental in bringing Halifax NA337 from the lake in Norway to its present home in the Trenton National Air Force Museum.” In fact, Jeff was President and Director of the Halifax Aircraft Association for the past 16 years, and even in his parting stood by this organization: people are to donate to the National Air Force Museum of Canada – Building Fund, “The Home of Halifax NA337” in lieu of flowers.
Condolences and memories may be forwarded through www.humphreymiles.com
Peter St-Louis, MBE
I was also alerted to the passing of Peter St-Louis on December 9, 2010 at the age of 87.
His aviation career began in 1941 when he joined the RCAF at 18 and nine years later he was seconded to the RAF. As family friend Desmond Morton wrote, “Pete seems to have been one of those who remained unfazed by awful situations. He did what had to be done, collected the British and conveyed them to safety. For his role in Operation Corkscrew, he received the Member of the Order of the British Empire.”
After so much excitement and adventure in his first fifty years, he spent the next 37 a little more quietly working for the federal government, spending time with family, and “playing a lot of golf.” For the full obituary, please click here.
Morton suggests the following for more info on Op. Corkscrew:
Douglas Liversidge's White Horizon (Oldham's, 1951).
Morris Gates' two-part article called "Operation Corkscrew: An Antarctic Rescue" and published in two issues of Airforce, the Air Force Association's magazine vol. 30, no. 2 and 3, pp. 40-43, and 41-45.