2007 NetLetter #978 - June 18, 2007

#978 - June 18, 2007
Nice to know
Vesta Stevenson
The national press advises -
If renewing your Canadian passport, there is no need to have a guarantor, and if applying for a new passport, any Canadian citizen who knows you for a specific length of time and with a valid passport can be a guarantor.
Check www.ppt.gov.ca
Air Canada News
Air Canada
The forthcoming flight YVR to Sydney on Air Canada, is a whopping 12,484 km.

Jazz plans to begin seasonal service Vancouver to Yellowknife effective December 1st using CRJ200 equipment.
TCA - Shearwater - YAW

TCA Emblem
George Brien
has sent us this information -

TCA Shearwater -YAW - People and History -1941-1960

Although Moncton ( YQM ) enjoyed TCA service since 15Feb 1940, it wasn't until a new airport at Shearwater, built for the RCAF and completed in 1940, that TCA were able to begin flying into the largest city in the Maritimes. The first flight on 1 Apr 1941, was an extension of the YUL/YQM flight.
One of the early employees was Station Attendant Walt Hines who began his Career in 1943. He advises that the first TCA Airport Manager at YAW would have been Wally Rowans and then followed by Ken Barbour until Austie McMahon took over likely in the early 50's and at his death in the late 50's, "Hec" MacKenzie became the last manager at Shearwater.

Walt's job when hired on would be loading and offloading the one daily flight, a Lockheed14, sometimes with the help of the Station mechanic. Another long time employee at YAW would have been Seldon Drake.

By Jul 1944 a flight was added from YHZ to YQY and YHZ/Blissville NB/YUL with Lockheed 14 equipment

CF-TCOPerhaps with CF TCO - purchased in 1939, and with over 17,000 hours on it before being sold in 1947!

April 1947, with the new DC3's coming into service, a new trans-border
Route was commenced serving YHZ/YQI/YSJ/BOS, using the Pennfield Airport to serve YSJ

TCA TimetableA look at the 1949 timetable indicates up to 8 departures per day Including 4 to YUL via YQM or YSJ, 2 on the Boston route and 3 eastbound.

My first view of YAW was in the fall of 1952. I had just returned from a short trip to sea as a Radio Officer, and as it was my first job, I decided to return to Home in YSJ in style. Well, the OW ticket plus transportation to the Airport left me with change from $10.00.

The ticket office and Reservations were both located at the Nova Scotian Hotel.

Joan Morrison and Lily Wardrophe would have been selling tickets while across the hall in the small Res. office, Art Russell and his staff, including "Mitch" Mitchell would be busy looking at their "stopsale" charts and making bookings.

The Airport taxi would also be stopping at the "Lord Nelson" Hotel, which was the TCA Crew hotel, and then down to the harbour for the short ride across to Dartmouth in the small Car ferry. From there it was a short ride out to Eastern Passage and the Airport.

If you were flight crew. You would be waiting for Doug Hamilton to pick you up in his big black crew cab. You would also be familiar with the "Victory Lounge" at the Hotel!!

Check in Agents may have included Dave Murdock, Bob Brown or Ralph Wilcox

DC-3I had never been at an airport before and had never seen an aircraft up close but sure it would have been a DC3 like this.

At that time I didn't think that by the spring of 1954, I would again be back at YAW but this time as a TCA employee.

Meanwhile, back in 1954, the Station would be handling many more flights including North Star service to LHR and YUL/YYZ.

Austie McMahon was the Station Manager with Melba Osbourne as his secretary. By this time Walt Hines was Ramp Controller and Ramp Agents and Station Attendants would include Tommy Dunn, George Roberts, Bob Currie, Vince Campbell, Bud Soward, Jerry Lilley and others.

Radio operators at the time were Cec Mannette, Gerry McGloin, Fritz Collicutt and Wally Walters. Mechanics included Ernie Hunter and Archie Driscoll.

In Apr 1954. myself along with Don MacLennan and Art Rogers arrived in YHZ where we would spend a month on upgrade training before reporting to RCAF Greenwood to be part of the staff handling YAW diversions

We would stay at the Belmont Hotel in Dartmouth, and would take the "Bluebell" bus for the 15-minute ride out to Shearwater. The bus did not go on to the base so we would have to make the 1/4 mile walk up the hill to the terminal. We would spend the time learning the duties of Load agent and also Passenger Agent check-in procedures from the friendly group of employees there.

I remember the Stn Mgr Austie McMahon as a "portly" chap who always had a cigar in his mouth and a great sense of humour.

The airport, being less than a mile from the Harbour and the Atlantic Ocean was usually plagued by morning and evening fog during spring and summer. So much so that our small staff of 3 Operations Agents. 3 Station Attendants and a Manager, that were assigned to RCAF Greenwood , soon found out we were working 16 hour days handling diverted flights. The upside was that on sunny days, Flight Dx would clear us for 24 hours at a time to enjoy time off. What other company could you work for that gave you every sunny day off!!

Transport Canada, TCA and Halifax realized that Shearwater was not the best choice for a reliable, fog free airline service, and a new site at Kelly Lake, recommended by TCA, was selected. Construction began in 1955 and by Jun 1, 1960 it was completed.

Peter Piggott"s "National Treasure, The history of TCA" tells the final story of TCA at YAW.

"On July 31,1960 as TCA Viscount flight 426 departed on schedule at 2345 for YQY, Station Manager 'Hec' MacKenzie and crew of 52 men began moving out to the new airport 30 miles away. Ramp equipment, vehicles and office furnishing all had to be in place by the next morning when flight 400 from YYZ touched down to disgorge its passengers."

John Cavill, Public Relations, YHZ recalls getting a call from an Officer at YAW in the early 80's. They had discovered some old cabinets containing passenger check- in material i.e. boarding passes, baggage tags etc. with the TCA logo.

John was quick to forward these items along to AC archives in YUL for safe keeping.
TCA Insignia
Reader Feedback

Further to NetLetter nr 972 and the article regarding Air Maritimes, Jim Griffith sends this -
It looks like I got a good discussion going about, MCA, Maritime Central Airways or was it Maritime Central Airlines and Air Maritimes as part of the lineage of CAI through EPA. Does anybody know if Parsons, and Artic Wings morphed into Transair thence PWA and thus became part of CAI?
Many historians have documented the mainline history of TCA and CAI, up to the big "MERGE" but the history of the regionals which eventually became part of Air Canada are less well known. White River Air Services and Great Lakes (Great Shakes) became Air Ontario I think and so on.
What about Quebec Air, Nordair and Northwest Territorial? How about the wet coast (pun intended) and the beginnings of Air B.C.? Surely there must be those among us who at one point or another worked for these interesting companies and have stories to tell? How about it Gals and Guys?

Jim Griffith
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Karin Fulcher sends us this information -
I mentioned to you last year about a trip I had taken to the Boeing Assembly plant in Everett - I have been back since then and the first 787 will be rolled out in about 6 weeks if all goes well - it is lovely!

However, I recently went on another road trip to McMinnville Oregon - about 30 miles SW of Portland, to the Evergreen Aviation Museum. The highlight of their collection is the Spruce Goose which is almost as big I believe as a 747 - huge!! and to think it is made entirely of wood!!
There is also an SR71-Blackbird there, and many other vintage aircraft, all in magnificent condition.

If anyone is in the Pacific Northwest check it out -
http://www.sprucegoose.org/

Karin Fulcher

Help wanted

From: Rod Brown

Greetings from the UK, Pionairs.

Whilst searching for some information I happened across your account of the B707 crash at Vancouver and the involvement of a Chipmunk aircraft.

I am currently writing the definitive history of the Chipmunk following fifty years of research and so this accident report has helped to complete my file on CF-CXQ.

May I firstly thank you and the other guys who posted such a full report on the AC website [Photo Galleries] and to secondly enquire whether you might be able to supply me with a shot of the wrecked Chipmunk for inclusion in my histories, this has got to be the most bizarre write-off of a Chipmunk in all of my histories and research.

Appreciate your help in my research

Best
Rod Brown
CFI Denham School of Flying
CV available:- www.chipmunkflyer.co.uk

Note: Picture and comments regarding the 707 crash can be found in the ACFamily Photo Gallery at: http://www.acfamily.net/photopost/showphoto.php?photo=22&ppuser=5072
ACRA Golf
ACRARosemary Farrell sends this information -
ACRA/Aer Lingus Tournament - Dublin - 22nd September 2007

I am an AC retiree, based in London, England, and am actively involved in our ACRA Badminton and would like a mention in your newsletter about our event taking place on the 22nd September. I am sure there are lots of people, retirees or not, who used to work with AC and would like to take part in our event, plus come to the wonderful city of Dublin and enjoy the Irish hospitality.

ACRA BadmintonOur website is at www.acrabadminton.org. We have a wonderful hotel selected right near the airport in easy reach of the playing facilities. There is also very easy access to downtown Dublin.

Rosemary Farrell
ACRA Badminton Secretary This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Terry's Travel Tips

Terry BakerYour checked luggage -
With the heightened security, the possibility of the Transport Security Administration requiring opening your luggage has increased. Most of us lock our luggage and the TSA are required to cut the locks if necessary, always with a notice that they have inspected the contents.

However, whilst the luggage remains unlocked, the threat of theft is increased.

There is on the market a lock which is quite inexpensive and for which the TSA authorities have a master key, allowing for the unlock and re locking of these locks. They are identified with "TSA" on the bottom of each lock. With these locks in place, there will be no need for authorities to suggest you leave your luggage unlocked.

Your copilot has this memory -
After retiring from Air Canada in 1984, I received employment with a local company operating a fleet of executive jets. Together with several other AC retirees we developed software for inventory and maintenance systems. These systems were for sale to other interested organizations that operated their own executive jets.

One day our company hosted a seminar in a local hotel at Dorval demonstrating our products to a group from several interested organizations in North America.

The presentation was given to a background of hammering and banging due to renovations being carried out in another conference room.
At the conclusion of the presentation, the author asked the audience if there were any questions. I immediately jumped up and made apologies for the noise, and revealed that our company had recently sold several packages to interested parties in deepest Africa, and that we were testing out the communications systems.
Smilies
Smiley Our chief pilot - Vesta - supplies this one -
AIRLINE ADS DEPICT CORPORATE JETS AS FREELOADERS
Cartoon airliners have to wait on the runway while corporate jets zip ahead of them and clog up the airways, causing delays for travelers, according to ads produced by the Air Transport Association