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Images of Expo '86
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Air France Concorde at Vancouver …. for CPAL it was a major ground handling contracts coup to service both the Air France and British Airways Concorde visitors to Expo in July and August. There are a total of 14 Concordes in service, seven with each airline. The finesse exhibited by Concorde staffers was impressive, according to CPAL airport personnel and working with them is obviously a prestige job.
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tmb ba concorde expo86x3British Airways Concorde....prestige ground handling job for CPAL

tmb ba concorde expo86x4A passenger service agent waits for passengers to disembark from British Airways Concorde at the Vancouver Ops Centre in order to escort them to Customs and Immigration.

The red carpet is for British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher.

Nordair acquired

CPAL became a major aviation participant in Quebec on July 31, 1986 when the provincial government sold Quebecair's 35 per cent interest in Nordair to CPAL, which already held 65 per cent, and then sold Quebecair itself to CPAL commuter carrier Nordair Metro.

The transactions paved the way for CPAL and Nordair to merge, thus making CPAL a powerful force in domestic aviation. Full details were distributed to employees on August 1, 1986 in a News Alert bulletin.

Canadian Pacific Air Lines Historic Images
Tokyo Advertisements from 1949
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Below is a photo taken at YVR on October 31, 1985 of an unusual hybrid livery of a B737-200 that CP Air operated on a short term lease from Britannia Airways in 1985 under registration C-GXCP.

In 1987, Canadian Airlines leased the same aircraft under registration C-GCAU.  It was registered as G-BJCV while flying for Britannia Airways.

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Photo courtesy of Mike Head at

Here is the same aircraft while flying for Ryanair painted to advertise Hertz Rent-a- Car in 1994.

A full list of of this aircraft's career can be found at

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Photo courtesy of Ken Fielding at Wiki Commons.

On March 24, 1987, the airline created by the acquisition of CP Air by Pacific Western was renamed Canadian Airlines International Ltd. The new logo symbolized "wings across five continents."

The red wing, shown in April 1991 on the first A320-211, denotes speed and motion; the pewter-coloured bars represent the five continents.
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Boeing 767-375ER C-FCAE was the second of eleven delivered to Canadian Airlines and put on the ten-hour Toronto - Sao Paulo run. With its roomy cockpit originally intended for a three-man crew and mix of older-generation instruments and CRTs, it is said to be a "Pilot's Dream." 
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Retired pilot nominated for heritage award.

James McInnis spent more than 34,000 hours in the air during his career in aviation.

If you went to Disneyland in the 1980s, he may have flown you there as a pilot on the Vancouver-to-Los Angeles route for more than a decade. But the highlight of his 50-year career was flying the Queen across B.C. during her 1971 royal tour.

McInnis, 86, has been nominated for a City of Richmond heritage award by his friend, Helen Healey, a former flight attendant. The annual awards recognize the accomplishments of individuals and organizations for conservation as well as education and awareness about the city’s diverse heritage.

“He was a sharp pilot,” Healey said recently. “You had to be sharp on the B.C. district, with the rain and snow and ice.”

McInnis was born and raised in Vancouver. In 1951, at age 17, he became the youngest person to hold a private pilot’s licence in Canada. He joined the air force and flew fighter planes out of Vancouver after training in Manitoba. He also worked as a flight instructor.

In 1962, he began his career as a commercial pilot with CP Air in a propeller plane “just as jets were coming in,” he said. McInnis flew local flights, then moved on to North American routes, flying a Boeing 737 for 22 years as CP Air became Canadian Airlines. His work took him to many airports in Canada and the United States, most often Montreal and L.A. “I took my kids to Disneyland six times,” he said.

He later flew international routes, mostly to Europe, before ending his aviation career flying to Hong Kong, Bangkok and Tokyo.

Trips to Asia often lasted four days, he said, as he flew first to Hong Kong, spending a night there before flying to Bangkok, then back to Hong Kong, and finally returning to Vancouver.

“It was tiring,” he said. “I always did a lot of walking when I got to the ground. That really helped me.” 

McInnis recalled the 1971 royal visit when he was tasked with flying the Queen, Prince Philip and Princess Anne to several cities over two weeks. Prince Philip spent time in the cockpit, and at the end of the tour, the pilot shook hands with the Queen. “It was a great thrill,” he said.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, he has missed spending time with his “airline cronies,” who would often have lunch at YVR on Sundays. He will also miss the Air Canada Pionairs Christmas party.

When he retired in 1994, he fulfilled a lifelong dream to fly a helicopter. He sold his private plane and took a few trips to Hawaii and Florida with his wife. But he thinks about flying often. “I miss it every day,” he said.

Source: The Vancouver Sun

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