Aviation Memorabilia Newsletter Since 1995

Aviation Memorabilia Newsletter

Since 1995

The NetLetter #1120

The NetLetter
 For Air Canada Retirees

May 15, 2010 - Issue 1120
5556 Subscribers
First published in October, 1995
  • Chief Pilot - Vesta Stevenson, Victoria, B.C.
  • Co-pilot - Terry Baker, Nanaimo, B.C.
  • Flight Engineer - Alan Rust, Surrey, B.C.
  • Ground Technician - Bill Rowsell, Londesboro, Ontario
To contact us, send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In This Issue
Our first 70 years
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery
Terry's Trivia
About us
Terry, Vesta & Alan Pionair's AGM 2007

Terry, Vesta & Alan
The NetLetter Web Site
The NetLetter Web Site
ACFamily Network
ACFamily Links
Air Canada Pionairs

Project North Star

Vesta Stevenson
Vesta Stevenson

We welcome you to allow the NetLetter to be your platform, and opportunity, to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC etal. and share your experiences with us!

The NetLetter is an email newsletter published every weekend and contains a mixture of nostalgia, current news and travel tips. We encourage our readers to submit their stories, photos and/or comments from either days gone by or from present day experiences and  trips. If we think that the rest of our readers will enjoy it, we will publish it here

We also welcome your feedback in regard to anything we post here. Many readers have commented with additional information names and personal memories from the photos and articles presented here.
The NetLetter, which is free, is open to anyone that wishes to subscribe but is targeted to retired employees from Air Canada, Canadian Airlines and all the other companies that were part of what Air Canada is today. Thanks for joining us!

Vesta & your NetLetter Team

From the "Between Ourselves" magazine issued Midsummer 1952 -
Under the headline "Women at work" is an article about the women who monitor the airwaves and maintain contact with TCA's fleet of aircraft by radioThe seven girl Radio Operators are based at the main stations, and here they are-
isabelVancouver is Isobel Pearson.
olgaCalgary is Olga Cravits.
ormaLondon Ontario is Orma Ruth.
reubyWindsor the duties are shared by Reuby Law and Lenore Hues.
madelaineWhile at Edmonton there is Madelaine Gadd and Cecilia Davidson. The third girl on the right is Olga Cravits who worked YEG before transferring to YYC.
Our first 70 years - Compiled by Terry Baker
Trans-Canada Air Lines/Air Canada1952 - June - TCA announce service to Germany planned to commence November 1st.
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery - Compiled by Terry Baker
TCA/Air Canada LogoMusings from the "Between Ourselves" magazine an Air Canada publication from years gone by.

Issue dated June 1952 -
A readers comment was "I was interested to hear from a Captain regarding his hours of duty", altogether, he said, TCA pilots flew a maximum of 900 hours yearly averaging 75 a month.

On this particular run his times of duty were -
1st day - reserve
2nd day - To Winnipeg
3rd Day - From Winnipeg
4th Day - To Winnipeg
5th Day - From Winnipeg
6th Day - Off
7th Day - Off
8th Day - To Winnipeg
9th Day - From Winnipeg

Then 5-7 days off.

A night's rest is had between each flight. The times shown repeat themselves in this cycle and thus afford the pilot a regular timetable. It can also be seen that he is not overworked with long spells of duty to the detriment of TCA.
Super Constellation box score -
- Galley design finalized with KLM who will build them to TCA standards.
- Construction started at Dorval on aircraft service dock.
- Flight Engineers assigned to Maintenance & Overhaul for selection and training.
Lorne Pitt 1952
TCA was the first airline in North America to give meal service on a square plastic plate, instead of compartmentalized on an aluminum dish. The Steward will prepare the serving in the galley before presentation to the passenger.
Lorne Pitt 1952
This service was introduced on the North Star service at the end of April.

Issue dated - Midsummer 1952
THE traditional "milk run" is not a figure of speech to the passengers and pilots on TCA flights between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, as the airline air lifts 5,170 pounds of fresh milk each month from Sydney to Stephenville.

This bulk shipment of pasteurized milk has caused the air crew to label the TCA aircraft flying the route "flying milk saucers" and the six gallon containers "jumbo size milkshakes."

A dairy in Sydney supplies Stephenville merchants with fresh milk three times weekly and assures the resourceful island community of a threefold supply of pasteurized milk and dairy products, as the TCA flights alternate with road and rail shipments from Corner Brook.

The milk is flown to Stephenville in special waxed cardboard containers, each carton weighing eight pounds empty and 56 pounds when filled. The cartons have 24-quart capacity, and have permitted the Stephenville housewife to share a milkman with neighbors 202 miles away in Sydney.

(Alan - I'm holding my comment about the shared milkman)
Milk Run - 1952
A milk shipment is looked over by Sydney Station Manager W. J. Law/or, left, as it is handled by Michael McKenna and Reg MacDonald.

TCARA Exec 1952
This is a photo of the TCARA (Trans-Canada Air Lines Recreation Association) executive at Saint John, NB

At back left to right: J. H. McLean, W. H. Bulmer, J. R. Gormley, H. M. 8oldac, W. S. Cook.
At front: G.A.Loggie, C. W. Hodgson and O. J. Walsh.
Alan's Space - by Alan Rust
Alan Rust
Alan's Space
Article for Airliners Magazine by Bob Bogash
As mentioned briefly last week, Fred Coyle has been kind enough to pass on to us this information he received from Bob Bogash who is involved with the Super Connie fin 405.

The March/April issue of AIRLINERS Magazine contains an article written by Bob Bogash and Ralph Pettersen on the Super Connie CF-TGE which is now in its final resting place at the Museum of Flight near Seattle, Washington.  Bob went on to say that the article had been a long time in gestation, and was actually written at least 9 months ago.

It's interesting to note that they mention the Air Canada Pionairs, RAPCAN and the Canadian Aviation Historical Society in the article as all of these organizations attempted to keep the aircraft in Canada. At the time, I agreed completely and supported keeping it in Canada as well, but now seeing how good a job they did and its future, I'm glad it turned out as it has.

I can't speak for everyone else, but Bob, you did a great job and I'm sorry we got in your way. It just caused needless delays and further expense which could have been directed elsewhere. I'm looking forward to seeing CF-TGE on my next trip to Seattle.

Below is an image and link to the article that is in Airliners Magazine, you can get a full copy at your favorite magazine stand or aviation shop at most airports. This is the fourth or fifth magazine article on CF-TGE and it's still generating lots of interest worldwide in the aviation community. Click here or on image for full article.

CF-TGE Article by Bob Bogash

Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc. People & Events
- Compiled by Terry Baker
CAIL TailsNews and articles from days gone by gleaned from various publications from C.A.I.L. and it's "ancestry" of contributing airlines.

Extracts from the "Canadi>n Flyer" magazine -
Issue dated - March 1998
"Team Canada 1998"
On January 11th, a charter left YOW with 400 business executives for mission to establish commercial contacts in Mexico City, Brasilia, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, and Santiago. The mission was dubbed "Team Canada '98" Here we have a photo of the crew of the B747.

(But no identifications - anyone care to try -eds)

Pacific Airways, an ancestor of Canadi>n began operating at YVR in 1925 and began flying to the Orient in 1949.

Millenium Team
Remember the "Millenium Bug", when the dated on the computers had to handle the change from 1999 to 2000?

Well here is the "Year 2000" team.

Left to right: Mike Fritz, Cathy Lewicki, Ric Bentkowski, Mary Jane Vandeven.

Scheduling 1998
Several years of patience, perseverance and relationship building have paid off for the Scheduling department.

Here are, from left to right:  Lorraine Bonner, Leslie Ferguson-Naim, Don McacLean.

Interviews 1998
In January, five Flight Attendants came off the line to help screen and interview over 1,000 prospective candidates who were vying for 100 new positions for language qualified Flight Attendants.

Left to right are: Leondra Mulder, Julie Thorsen, Remu Holler, Lancia Wong Mika Sasaki.
Halifax 1998
These three Halifax based Station Attendants are readying a flight for YYZ and YWG.

Front left to right: Kevin Brett, Gary Smith, Richard Wolthers.
yhzstnattdsAtlantic Canada is known for the warmth of its people, these three Halifax based Flight Attendants are a case in point.
Molly English, Assunta Scattalon, Suzanne Bertin.
Reader's Feedback - Compiled by Terry Baker
Reader's Feedback
George Brien, a frequent contributor to the NetLetter, has sent us this history of Dorval -

Hi Gang,
Here's some "stuff' I dug up on the early days of  Dorval.

Gee!! that was over 55 years ago  and on a fine day, we would walk to work from Lakeshore  Road, with just the open fields after you cross the RR tracks.   


There has been several articles lately about YYZ and YVR Airports in the early days which has prompted me to dig into some info and pictures that I had gathered, along with some first hand experience, about Dorval Airport.

By 1940, St Hubert Airport was becoming too small for the increased wartime traffic so the Government purchased the land of what was the "Dorval Racetrack' for a new Airport which was opened in 1941. In November, 1952, my twin brother Gord and I had just finished Radio School in YSJ, and at the age of 18, decided to sign on with Transport Canada, Aviation branch, YUL at the busiest airport in Canada at that time.
Early Dorval
My first view of YUL would be like this picture of the Domestic terminal. Looking from airside, to the left would be TCA North Star and DC3 on the ramp, along with a USAF DC3. Next spot was where Colonial Airlines usually parked their DC4's and then the Northeast Airlines DC3. No sign of CPA DC3'S so all three of them must have been airborne.

Flying up on a TCA DC3 from YSJ, flight 21 took hours and 35 mins to make the trip. We were met by a fellow D.O.T (Transport Canada) employee who took us over to the "Mercroft Inn/Boarding house" on the lakeshore. Many Airport/TCA employees used these accommodations, and the owners gladly let us stay there on credit for 6 weeks until the first paycheque arrived. They were used to these situations.

Dorval Airport was originally planned to be a BCATP airfield but St Huberts was becoming too small to handle TCA flights along with the new "Ferry Command" aircraft. About the fall of 1941, civil operations were moved to Dorval.
Dorval in the 40's
The original Dorval building looked like this as built in the 40's.
Inside Terminal
In Peter Pigott's History of TCA, he notes that the terminal was modeled on the one at Washington's National Airport, with its wide lobby like a 4 star hotel.

Inside the Terminal , across the waiting room, was TCA check-in, about 3 positions plus ticketing and behind were TCA operations/radio etc along with baggage assembly.

I don't recall any conveyor belts so baggage was likely "man handled" back to the carts. Across the lobby were small counters for Northeast Airlines /Colonial/ and CPA.

The terminal did have a small restaurant called the "Tea Wing", run by "Railway News "(now CARA), with counter stools and a few tables, located just to the right of the main entrance.

Transport Canada's Radio Operators handled all radio operations except TCA and we were located on the second floor. Four positions were normally manned, including CPA, Northeast Airlines, Colonial Airlines plus a position for regular weather broadcasts and other aircraft.
Radio Operators
Transport Canada's Radio Operators handled all radio operations except TCA and we were located on the second floor. Four positions were normally manned, including CPA, Northeast Airlines, Colonial Airlines plus a position for regular weather broadcasts and other aircraft.

The operating position was similar to this BC Aviation Museum mock-up.

Dorval 1954?
Domestic Terminal Circa 1954? Parking lot has been added.

Note the newly arrived Super Connie in the background, near the TCA hanger.

Super Connie - Dorval
Another view from the TCA hanger. New terminal being constructed. Note the TCA hangers in the background.

As per McGrath's "Airports of Canada" , six hangers were erected originally in this area. One was used as the International Terminal and included the "Airport Inn" on the second floor? ( I only stayed there once).

TCA eventually took over Hangar 5 & 6. I worked briefly over in Hanger 4? Where we ran the overseas radio circuits (ARCAN & NARTEL).
Early days of Dorval
I'm not sure which hanger the International Terminal was in. (perhaps Vesta who worked in that area with TCA would remember?)

Aviation Author Don McVicar was in the process of finishing his latest book "Dorval Airport" www.donmcvicar.com/revdorva.htm With input from many TCA people. Unfortunately, he passed away in 1997 and I can find no record of the book ever being published.
George Brien 1955
Just to put a face to your correspondent!! I was just scanning some old pictures for my kids and ran across this one of my early days with TCA taken in Jan 1955 in Fredericton, in my "Operations Agent" uniform.

George and Noreen
Now at our 55th Wedding Anniversary with my wife Noreen.
Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips - by Terry Baker
Terry Baker
Terry Baker
Jack and Aureen Morath are two UK Pionairs who are instrumental in arranging various events for the local Pionair population, i.e. London walks, day trips to the Continent and, in the past, an annual trip to a north American city.

Here, from the UK Pionairs monthly newsletter for May 2010 is a report of their recent trip - Our Far East Adventure:  (Jack and Aureen Morath)
The objective of our latest trip was a visit to the island of Taiwan in the south China Sea which involved a five night cruise starting and finishing in Hong Kong, with planned stops at three places on the island including Taipei the capital.

First of all we obtained return tickets on Thai Airlines to Bangkok. Thai have two flights daily at this time - both 747s, and we took the overnight flight which departs at 2l.30, arriving in Bangkok the following afternoon. The other Thai flight departs London at lunch time and arrives in Bangkok early the following morning. It was a l0 1/2  flight and there were around 80 empty seats on our flight.

We had booked in advance at our normal hotel which we had used a few times before. It is in the suburbs of Bangkok and not in the city centre. The temperature was in the 90's but wasn't uncomfortable. Unfortunately the standard of this four star hotel had gone down since we last stayed there, so we decided to change to another hotel. Most of the hotels give a discount for travel industry people and we always ask for that especially the three and four star hotels. I already had a note of other hotels in the area that I had checked on the computer and we moved to another hotel which was nearer the main shopping area which pleased Aureen!

After three days, we flew to Chiang Mai which is just over an hour's flight on Thai Airlines. Our friend and former colleague Frank Shettlesworth met us at the airport and drove us to our hotel which was the Amora Tapoe Hotel. It is close to the markets and the downtown areas. It was great to see Frank and his staff again at his travel offices. Frank and his staff had arranged our hotel and we were very pleased with it. You can see details of Frank's company 'Wandering Star Tour' at  www.wanderingstartour.com 

Anything you want to know about Chiang Mai or Thailand in general, Frank and his staff will be able to help you.

Contact Frank at:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Smileys - Compiled by Terry Baker
As we surf the internet and back issues of airline magazines we regularly find airline related jokes and cartoons. Below is our latest discoveries.
cartoonJake Visser YYC.
visserAnd here is Jake Visser himself.
We hope you have enjoyed this issue of the NetLetter, see you next week!

Your NetLetter Team