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NetLetter #1462 | June 01, 2021
The NetLetter
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Lockheed Super Constellation in Trans-Canada Air Lines colors

Lockheed Super Constellation at the
Museum of Flight at Boeing Field in Seattle
Photo by Frank Kovalchek @ Commons.wikimedia.org

Dear Reader,

Welcome to The NetLetter, established in 1995 as a dedicated newsletter for Air Canada retirees, we have evolved into the longest running aviation-based newsletter for Air Canada, TCA, CP Air, Canadian Airlines and all other Canadian-based airlines that once graced the skies.

The NetLetter is self funded and is always free to subscribers. It is operated by a group of volunteers and is not affiliated with any airline or associated organizations.

The NetLetter 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.

Please note: We do our best to identify and credit the original source of all content presented. However, should you recognize your material and are not credited; please advise us so that we can correct our oversight.

Our website is located at www.thenetletter.net Please click the links below to visit our NetLetter Archives and for more info about the NetLetter.

About Us!NetLetter Archives

Note: to unsubscribe or change your email address please scroll to the bottom of this email.

News

NetLetter News

new subscriber 200wWe have welcomed 89 new subscribers so far in 2021.

We wish to thank everyone for your support of our efforts.


archives x200Back issues of The NetLetter are available in both the original newsletter format and downloadable PDF format.

We invite you to visit our website at www.thenetletter.net/netletters to view our archives.

Restoration and posting of archive issues is an ongoing project. We hope to post every issue back to the beginning in 1995.


feeback 200x165

We always welcome feedback about Air Canada (including Jazz and Rouge) from our subscribers who wish to share current events, memories and photographs.

Particularly if you have stories to share from one of the legacy airlines: Trans-Canada Air Lines, Canadian Airlines, CP Air, Pacific Western, Eastern Provincial, Wardair, Nordair, Transair, Air BC, Time Air, Quebecair, Calm Air, NWT Air, Air Alliance, Air Nova, Air Ontario, Air Georgian and all other Canadian based airlines that once graced the Canadian skies.

Please feel free to contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We will try to post your comments in the next issue but, if not, we will publish it as soon as we can.

Thanks!


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Events

Coming Events

Fly over the Okanagan

A year ago, Trevor Jones and a group of pilots planned and executed a flyover in honour of Captain Jennifer Casey of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, who died after a tragic crash in Kamloops last summer.

This time the motivation is slightly different. "The first time we did it was for the Snowbirds. We wanted to (honour) them and finish what they started. This time it's COVID-19."

Jones tells that he wanted to organize something for people to get outside on the May long weekend.

The flyover is expected to take place on Sunday, May 23, 2021.

As of now, the plan is to have two groups of planes leave Kelowna, then head north to Vernon before heading to Penticton, following the path of the lake. Jones will be flying his Mooney Ovation and he is excited to be flying with his father, Blair, in his Lancair and a group of pilot friends who will be flying everything from float planes to helicopters.

Spectators can watch the planes takeoff from the Kelowna International Airport or from any vantage point along the route that offers unobstructed views of the sky. Jones says they plan a few tricks along the way, "we'll be flying over downtown, maybe a couple of times."

Source: castanet.net/news/Kelowna 

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RCAF Snowbirds 2021 schedule currently set to start June 12 - 13 at Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Non-aerobatic displays are scheduled for:

June 24 - St. Georges de Beauce, Quebec
June 26 - Bagotville, Quebec
July 1 (Canada Day) - Ottawa, Ontario
July 16 - Vancouver, British Columbia

The first aerobatic display in Canada is set for July 18 at White Rock, British Columbia.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this schedule is subject to change.

Please refer to the full schedule at:
www.rcaf-arc.forces.gc.ca/en/snowbirds/schedule.page

tmb 550 rcaf snowbirds

Due to rising worries about COVID-19 cases in Europe and wide travel restrictions, the Aero 2021 expo in Friedrichshafen, Germany, has been cancelled for the second year a row, and the next Aero show has been set for April 30, 2022.

For the time being, the European Rotors show in Cologne, Germany is still planned for November 16 to 18, 2021.

Source: avweb.com

tmb 550 aero cancels show

tmb warr emblemWorld Airline Road Race (WARR) 

tmb warr singapore

The World Airline Road Race (WARR), a gathering of airline industry professionals from all corners of the world, includes all levels and positions of the industry.

Our goal is to provide a worldwide athletic event, promote travel within the airline industry and foster friendships and co-ordination between airlines.

The highlights of this four-day event from October 5 - 8, 2021, are 5K and 10K run/walks for charity. 

All airline associates, their family and friends are welcome.

Source: www.worldairlineroadrace.org


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Reader's Feedback

Subscriber Feedback

From subscriber Don McMartin:

Hi,

Just a comment regarding your article about the Boeing 314 in NetLetter #1461.

It drew my interest mainly because I have seen a 314 a few times at the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola Florida. The aircraft they have inside the museum dwarfs everything in the museum, with many aircraft parked under its wing. The history on their particular aircraft makes it possibly the most famous of them all.

In brief, it was the first aircraft to land in Japan after the Japanese surrender. It landed in Tokyo bay close to the USS Missouri, the ship the surrender was signed on. It carried MacArthur and all the other U.S. generals and dignitaries. Shortly after that it was released from military service and purchased by Howard Hughes who bought it to learn how to fly this kind of aircraft so he could later fly the Spruce Goose as they were very similar.

The Naval Aviation Museum is a great day outing when visiting the Panhandle. Admission is free except for the IMAX theatre. There are two large buildings, a great restaurant and should you be there in March, you can see the Blue Angels practice...up close...not like a traditional air show. There are also many cockpits of various types of aircraft, mostly fighter jets you can sit in.

Definitely a great day for everyone.

Editors' Note:

The aircraft that Mr. McMartin is referring to is actually a PB2Y Coronado designed by Consolidated Aircraft and utilized by the US Navy during WW2. It is the only preserved aircraft from this fleet. It's design and appearance are quite similar to the Boeing 314 however, it is slightly smaller.

tmb 550 PB2Y Coronado

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Readers Photos

Submitted Photos

tmb 250 ac cail pinThanks to all of you for another excellent NetLetter.

I really look forward to receiving it particularly in these different times we live in. I found this pin amongst my other Air Canada uniform pins and I wonder if anyone knows where it's from.

Thank you all again for a great job!!

Lauraine Pomerleau,
AC flight attendant 1971-2001

Editor's Note from Ken Pickford:

The pin is related to the AC/Canadian Airlines merger, I would guess around the time they started code-sharing before the merger was final.

The "Proud Wings" livery first appeared on a 747-400 in January 1999, with a return of the Canada Goose used by CP in the 1950's & 60's prior to the change to CP Air branding in 1968.

That livery only appeared on about 15 mainline aircraft plus 2 Canadian Regional Dash 8's. They stopped the repainting when the deal with AC was announced, with CP becoming an AC subsidiary in late December 1999 and fully merging January 1, 2001. 


From NetLetter editor Wayne Albertson:

Don McMartin's submission for the 'Readers' Feedback section reminded me of my visit to the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum at McMinnville, Oregon in 2014.

Pictured below are Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose with a replica of Charles Lindbergh's 'Spirit of St. Louis' in the foreground. The original Spirit of St. Louis is in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

tmb 550 Spruce Goose Evergreen

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Remember When

  Remember When

This, the final in a series, appeared in the "Horizons" magazine issue dated July 1996.

Life as a Con by Annette Malvar.

For years I refused to travel anywhere on a pass during high season. Call me a chicken, but the thought of trying to get on a very full and very oversold flight is not my idea of fun.

Two years ago, I finally had to give in because my grandmother, who lives on another continent, was celebrating her 85th birthday at the beginning of August. Of course, I had to go. My delight at travelling during the high season was doubled because I also had to get my mother on the flight.

My mother was oblivious to the strain I was under on that particular day. She dutifully stood beside me and placed all her trust in me. The innocence of it all. Little did she know that the particular flight we were listed on was jam-packed and the con list was as long as my arm.

My mother and I, of course, had the lowest priority of the group. If you look up the word "stress" in the dictionary, I honestly believe there should be a picture of a group of cons standing at the 'stand-by desk' in Toronto, all intently listening to the machine gun fire sound of the boarding pass printer. I remember staring at the printed con list I had and counting the boarding passes being printed out. There were 22 cons and only 20 passes shot out.

We couldn't get on a flight anywhere that night, and I'll never forget the stunned look on my mother's face as I gingerly led her back to my apartment. I tried to explain the theory of full flights and more senior staff to her, but I don't think she was ever really able to grasp the concept. So, as Air Canada's high season starts, I wish all of you much patience and good luck in your travels!


Norm Foster shares another of his memories -

We had just levelled off at our cruising altitude of 31,000 feet. The route from Los Angeles to Toronto was clear and the forecast was for a smooth ride. I was in command of the amazing B-747 and was enjoying the ride.

Still in the era when visits to the flight deck were allowed, it was rather routine when the in-charge-flight attendant came to me with a request for a visit by one of our First Class passengers.

Although not always able to accommodate such requests, this one came with the caveat that the passenger was Wayne Gretzky’s personal manager. Intrigued, I agreed and a few minutes later he was escorted onto the flight deck. Pleasant conversation followed and after about 10 minutes the question came! Could Wayne come up for a visit?

I found it humorous when it finally dawned on me that I had just undergone an interview.......and I had passed!

Wayne soon replaced his manager on the flight deck and unnecessarily introduced himself. Twisting fully around in my seat to face him, and with firm directions to my 2 other crew members that “You have control!” I spent the next 2 hours in a one on one conversation with 'The Great One'.

Inasmuch that this occurred over 30 years ago, I have long forgotten most of the conversation. I do recall that he mentioned that he went barefoot in his skates. Also, he shared his skate size with a good friend, who first wore Wayne’s new skates for a break-in period before sending them on game ready. He also repeated a statement made previously that you would never catch him bragging about a goal but he would talk all you want about his assists.

Time flew by and as we neared Toronto, when Wayne began writing something on a piece of paper, “ Do you ever get to spend any free time in L.A.?” he asked, as he handed me the paper. It contained 2 phone numbers and he explained that I was invited to a morning pre-game skate and then the evening game any time I could make it....as his guest. The numbers were his manager’s, who would take care of all arrangements.

As he rose to leave, he paused for a moment before requesting the paper back, and added another number. “That’s my number. If you have any problem, call me” and with that he was gone.

Cleaning out my flight bag a few years later when I retired, I smiled as I came across Wayne’s note. He had long since moved to St. Louis and then New York, and I had never taken him up on his offer; spending 2 hours one-on-one with a hockey God was enough!

Epilogue:
As a result of our Flight Deck conversation, I attempted going barefooted in my hockey skates, trying to have at least one thing in common with the Great One. This also failed!

Editors' Note: When we asked Norm if he took a photo, this was his response –

“Sorry, but that was pre iPhone days and I never thought to carry a camera, Norm”.


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News

Women in Aviation

United Airlines says it will train 5,000 pilots over the next 10 years at its own Arizona flight academy and half of the graduates will be women and people of colour.

The airline bought Westwind School of Aeronautics in Phoenix last fall and is turning it into its own private pipeline to fill its cockpits. Many of the candidates will enter the academy with no flight experience and possibly be in the right seat of its single-aisle aircraft in five years.

United says it will continue to hire from its traditional sources, like the military and from charter and cargo airlines, but academy grads will be groomed from 'Day One' to be airline pilots. 

Source: avweb.com/aviation-news

tmb 550 united pilot school

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AC News

Air Canada News

click here redfor the latest posts at the Air Canada Mediaroom.

you tube linkClick the logo to open the Air Canada YouTube channel. 

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Star Alliance News

Star Alliance News

By joining forces, Amadeus and Star Alliance are creating a more global, frictionless, and touchless journey for the millions of frequent flyers enrolled in the respective programs of its member airlines.

tmb star alliance touchless travelStar Alliance Biometrics, launched November 2020, allows passengers to pass through curb-to-gate touchpoints within airports, such as check-in kiosks, bag-drop, and boarding gates, which traditionally require both passport and boarding pass, by using a secure identity management solution featuring facial recognition technology, allowing for a touchless experience at airports, an important safety feature in times of COVID-19.

At the same time, Amadeus' secure and agnostic identity data exchange and verification solution, Traveler ID, enables a simplified experience across the entire travel chain by connecting a passenger's digital ID to any online and biometric portal at opportune moments of the traveler journey. In the future, these passengers will be able to use their Traveler ID to also access existing or new airports that have implemented the Star Alliance Biometrics solution.

Source: staralliance.com


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TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery

tmb 550 horizons classic

Found in the "Horizons" magazine.

Issue dated August 1997.

Betty Edwards, in Regina, Customer Sales & Service Agent (centre). Celebrated her 40th service anniversary.

From left to right: Judy Klein, Customer Sales & Service Agent; Bob Ferris, Manager, Customer Service; Betty; Customer Sales & Service Agents Evan Quick and Greg Gillespie (behind Betty).

tmb 550 betty edwards

In Frankfurt, Heidi Lang, Customer Service Coordinator, is congratulated by Hans Schuett, Area Manager, Customer Service, Central & Eastern Europe, on her 30-year service anniversary.
tmb 550 heidi lang

Inaugural Halifax-Frankfurt Flight.

There to welcome the first passengers on our direct Halifax-Frankfurt route were, from left to right: Sheila MacKay, Area Sales Manager; Janice Blackburn, Passenger Sales Manager, N.S.,
N.B. & P.E.I.; Customer Sales & Service Agents in Halifax Marlis Dupupet, Lexlie Blackler and Mahrukh Rustom.

tmb 550 yhz fra inaugural

Issue dated October 1997.

Farewell Mirabel (YMX).

This message was prepared by Pierre Richard, Customer Service Manager Mirabel, and delivered to the passengers of AC870 on September 14, 1997, Air Canada's final departure from Mirabel to Paris.

“In a few minutes, Air Canada will begin boarding its last flight to Paris from Mirabel. All the Air Canada ground employees at Mirabel, passenger agents, baggage agents, airside employees, office employees and mechanics wanted to come and wave goodbye to you from the main departure lounge.

We are very sad to see you go, but also very proud. Sad, because we have to leave this magnificent airport that, over the years, has become more than just a workplace for us. Proud, because we sincerely feel that we have served you well right up to very end.

We promise that starting tomorrow we will continue to give you the best service possible, so as to keep the Mirabel spirit alive and well for many years to come”.

The photo below shows a convoy of trucks from Mirabel to Dorval which marks the closure of the Air Canada operations from Mirabel International Airport (YMX) on Sunday night September 14, 1997.

tmb 550 ymx trucks

tmb yul first intl parA Ramp Agent ushers in Air Canada's first international scheduled flight since 1975, AC871 on September 15, 1997, from Paris to Dorval International Airport (YUL).

Below is the Flight Deck crew of AC871, ex Paris September 15, 1997. Captain Bob Tucker, First Officer Dave Osborne and Second Officer Andre Bujold.
tmb 550 crew ac871 ex par

Editors' Note: As the passengers took off from YMX and will probably return to YUL -

What happens if they originally drove to YMX in their own vehicles? Food for thought! 

Additional information from issue dated November 1997.

Consolidation of international and domestic traffic at Montreal's Dorval Airport has been an 'overnight success' despite the challenges. And it literally happened overnight.

In fact a traveller leaving Montreal for Paris or London on September 14, and returning the next evening would have been in for quite a surprise, says Martin Boyer, Air Canada's General Manager, Customer Service for Eastern Canada.

"As soon as flights 870 and 866 had left Mirabel on Sunday, September 14, 1997, a fleet of 35 transport trucks (photo above) began ferrying equipment down the highway to Dorval, so we were all ready Monday afternoon for the return flights," said Boyer. So far, he says, the consolidation has been "a pleasant surprise. It went much better than we thought it would".


Issue Dated November 1997.

This photo by Brian Losito (company photographer) is the most visible and colourful reminder of the Children's Miracle Network on this Air Canada A320 fin #205, painted with children's faces.

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CP Air, Canadi>n People Gallery

CP Air Banner

Reprinted with the permission of Larry Milberry of www.canavbooks.wordpress.com

pdf download50x47Wardair/CP Air 747 Retrospective.

tmb 550 Wardair

tmb info canadian

From the "InfoCanadi>n" magazine.

Issue dated November 1987.

A special lapel pin was designed to celebrate Canadian Airlines' participation as an official carrier of the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary.

The pin features an Olympic logo and a Canadian 'tail' on a background of light blue. Linda Davis, Manager, Sales Promotion shows the new pin.

tmb cpa linda davis tmb cpa 1988 olympic

cpa news

Issue dated March-April 1986.

Shanghai! All ready for inaugural.

The inaugural Shanghai flight CP451 takes off from Vancouver at 1 pm, April 29, 1986, following a Chinese ceremony at Vancouver airport.

Twenty media guests will be aboard, including three from Europe, and Jim McKeachie, director, public relations. The Europeans were invited because the Shanghai flight was a direct connection to CPA's Amsterdam flights.

Sheldon Stoilen, senior vice president, sales and service, will be the ranking CPAL official aboard. Other CPAL executives, including President Don Carty, will be visiting Shanghai on subsequent flights.

Tim Darcovich, director, sales planning, said vacation pass and reduced rate travel is available on the Shanghai flight and the procedure is normal except that travellers should check out their visa requirements well in advance. CP Air Holidays is marketing tours on the Shanghai flights.


As April 30, 2021 was the 35th anniversary of the inaugural flight, several postings were made to the CPA Employee Facebook page.

tmb cpa yvr sha inaugThis was posted by John Gilchrist on April 29, 2021, with the comment “It is hard to believe that it’s been 35 years since the inauguration YVR-SHA flight took off”. 

Earlier, in November 2020, John Gilchrist posted photo below. "When opening a new station, in this case Shanghai (1986), you could always count on support from Head Office".

From left to right: Bonko Chen (local staff), Doug Cameron (Ramp), Edwina Shuster (Passenger Service), Sophia Garcias (SHACP agent), Sheila Blake (SHACP Supervisor), Peng Chan (Mtce), Marv Skelton (Mtce), John Gilchrist, YVR Head Office; Mike Richards (Cargo) and Wally Chutskoff (Cabin Services).

cpa new station shanghai

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Featured Video

 Featured Video(s)

Air Canada's corporate photographer, Brian Losito, has been a very busy man during his more than 30 years with the company.

Brian has always been very helpful to us at The NetLetter as our contact when we require permission to reprint material.

Brian shares some of his favourite photographs in a video entitled 'Award Winning Perfect Picture: A thirty-year Story in the Making' posted on the Air Canada official website; click the image below.

Also, check out the Everyday Reviews YouTube channel for 'Flight of a Lifetime - Air Canada 787 Dreamliner Air to Air Filming' for a look at how Brian captures the great photos that we all enjoy. 

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Odds and Ends

Odds and Ends

tmb all nipponName this airline – answer in Terry's Trivia below.

Flying Motorcycle.

tmb 250 subaru flying motor bikeSubaru Corporation has filed for a U.S. patent for a “land-and-air vehicle”—a tilt-rotor/motorcycle; and the application wasn’t dated April 1.

Drawings show a heavily faired gas engine-powered motorcycle with conventional throttle, clutch and front-brake controls on its handlebars. It also shows a piggyback airframe component with a pair of wings folded back against the side of the fuselage, each with a propeller driven by five electric motors.

Source: www.avweb.com/aviation-news


Flying drone.

tmb 250 ups vtol droneUPS and its UPS Flight Forward subsidiary have announced plans to purchase up to 150 Beta Technologies Alia-250 electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) cargo aircraft.

The first ten aircraft, which will be used to support the company’s small and mid-size markets, are scheduled to begin arriving in 2024. UPS says it has also reserved Beta’s recharging station and intends to land the eVTOLs on-property at its facilities.

Beta’s Alia-250 prototype completed its first interstate flight last month, travelling from the company’s test facility in Plattsburgh, New York, to its headquarters in Burlington, Vermont. The Alia-250 is expected to have a cruise speed of up to 170 MPH, 250-mile range, cargo capacity of 1,400 pounds and recharge time of 50 minutes.

The single-pilot eVTOL was designed to eventually operate autonomously “as technologies and regulations are established.”

Source: www.avweb.com/recent-updates


tmb thunder airlines emblemThunder Airlines.

tmb thunder airlines aircraftFounded in 1994 with one general goal in mind — to serve the Northern Ontario communities — and that is precisely what we do. Our specialized fleet of aircraft and friendly staff can accommodate you in a helpful way, and no matter what you need, we are your northern connection.

Based out of Thunder Bay, Timmins and Sudbury, we service almost all airports in Ontario and surrounding areas with frequent and reliable flights.

We are one of the largest Medical Transfer contractors for ORNGE (Ontario Ministry of Health) and supply charter air service to many organizations in Ontario. We also operate scheduled passenger service to the coast of James Bay, from our Timmins base.

Source: thunderair.com/company-history


Larry Milberry of Canavbooks sends us his list of aviation books available.

The big deal for your people probably is an autographed set of Air Transport in Canada at $65 all-in vs the normal $155++. 

tmb ATC book coverHere’s your booklist for the coming months. You’ll note blockbuster deals for Air Transport in Canada ($65 all-in) and for Canada’s Air Force at War and Peace ($75.00 all-in) & several top new titles starting with the great Avro Arrow test pilot Jan Zurakowski’s own story (not to be missed), to The Devil’s Trick (Canada’s many roles in the Viet Nam war) to Appel (A Canadian in the French Foreign Legion).

Here are 4 titles about some of our favourite topics – bush flying (Austin Airways), the DC-3 (RCAF, aircraft restoration, etc.), RCAF fighters, and Canada in WWII. The Gordon Mitchell book is a real gem in case you already have our own Austin Airways: Canada’s Oldest Airline. Dakota #12253 combines all the valuable info with prize-winning book design. Also … check down below for the best offer you’ll ever see for an autographed set of Air Transport in Canada.

Full list at www.canavbooks.wordpress.com


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Wayne's WingsWayne's Wings

wayne albertson articles

This week in History - 1954 The Lockheed Super Constellation

Ken Pickford sent us a link to a recent Vancouver Sun 'This Week in History' item with the comments below. Thanks Ken!

"The ad pictured below appeared in the May 4, 1954 edition, mentioning an introductory TCA Super Constellation visit to YVR on May 6, 1954 where it was open for public tours for 5 hours before returning to Montreal. TCA put the Super Constellation into service on May 14, 1954, initially on the Toronto-Montreal-Prestwick-London route.

Some related ads further down, including a CPA ad for their new Vancouver-Amsterdam "Polar Route" service (with a fuel stop in Greenland which isn't mentioned) which started in July 1955, initially using the DC-6B before switching to the Bristol Britannia in 1958 and the DC-8 in 1961.

CP was the second airline to begin direct West Coast-Europe service after Scandinavian Airlines which started Los Angeles-Copenhagen service In November 1954, also using the DC-6B with two fuel stops at Winnipeg and Sondre Stromfjord, Greenland (now known as Kangerlussuaq). YWG was only a technical stop, no traffic rights. Several days a week there were two SAS flights stopping at YWG, one in each direction.

TCA began their once-a-week "Hudson Bay Route" service between Vancouver and London with stops at Winnipeg, Gander and sometimes Prestwick, in 1958 using the Super Constellation.

The Winnipeg-Gander sector barely crossed the southern tip of Hudson Bay.

The cabin photo in the Vancouver Sun item was Lufthansa, not TCA."

Click Here (or the image below) to read the full Vancouver Sun article.

Click Here for a detailed article from our friends at the Canadian Aviation Historical Society on TCA Super Constellations dated May 2010.

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Travel

Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

Terry BakerTerry Baker, co-founder of the NetLetter scours the internet for aviation related Trivia and Travel Tips for you, our readers, to peruse.

Answer for the mystery airline in 'Odds and Ends'.

All Nippon Airways' (ANA) Pokémon-themed flights, on a Boeing 747, were introduced in 1998 to delight the young and young at heart. On ANA Pokémon Jets, cabin attendants wore Pokémon Jet Aprons to welcome you aboard, and the ANA Pokémon Jet theme appeared on headrest covers and paper cups. 

Photo from commons.wikimedia.org

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During the recent ZOOM session with the UK Pionairs group, members related some stories about using the helicopter service between London Heathrow (LHR) and Gatwick airport (LGW).

The service, operated by Airlink, was the brand name of a helicopter shuttle service which ran between London's two main airports, Gatwick and Heathrow, between 1978 and 1986. Operated jointly by British Caledonian Airways and British Airways Helicopters using a Sikorsky S-61 owned by the British Airports Authority, the "curious and unique operation" connected the rapidly growing airports in the years before the M25 motorway existed.

This photo shows the Airlink shuttle Sikorsky S-61N G-LINK arriving by the old South Pier at Gatwick sometime in the mid 1980's. Previously this service was flown using Westward Airways twin-engined BN-2A Islanders but as the passenger and baggage loads increased the S-61N was used. 

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airlink_(helicopter_shuttle_service)

tmb 550 airlink helicopter

Here is an aerial view of Vancouver International Airport (YVR) 2021.

Source: yvr.ca/en/blog/2021/carbon-neutrality

tmb 550 yvr aerial view

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Smilies

Smileys

Carolyn Kennedy Payer posted this variation of a classic joke on the CP Air Facebook web site -

Qantas Airways: Repair Division

Remember, it takes a College Degree to fly a plane but only a High School Diploma to fix one.

After every flight, Qantas pilots fill out a form, called a 'Gripe Sheet' which tells mechanics about problems with the aircraft. The mechanics correct the problems; document their repairs on the form, and then pilots review the Gripe Sheets before the next flight.

Never let it be said that ground crews lack a sense of humour. Here are some actual maintenance complaints submitted by Qantas' pilots (marked with a P) and the solutions recorded (marked with an S) by maintenance engineers.

  • P: Left inside main tyre almost needs replacement.
    • S: Almost replaced left inside main tyre.
  • P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough.
    • S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.
  • P: Something loose in cockpit.
    • S: Something tightened in cockpit.
  • P: Dead bugs on windshield.
    • S: Live bugs on back-order.
  • P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent.
    • S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground.
  • P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
    • S: Evidence removed.
  • P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
    • S: DME volume set to more believable level.
  • P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick.
    • S: That's what friction locks are for.
  • P: IFF inoperative in OFF mode.
    • S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.
  • P: Suspected crack in windshield.
    • S: Suspect you're right.
  • P: Number 3 engine missing.
    • S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.
  • P: Aircraft handles funny; (I love this one!)
    • S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.
  • P: Target radar hums.
    • S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics.
  • P: Mouse in cockpit.
    • S: Cat installed.

And the best one for last!

  • P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer.
    • S: Took hammer away from midget.

Editors' Note:

There are numerous variations of this list on the internet.

A non-airline specific version can be found at:
aviationhumor.net/pilots-vs-maintenance-engineers


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The NetLetter Team
 
 Wayne Albertson, Ken Pickford & Terry Baker
 

Wayne Albertson, Ken Pickford & Terry Baker
Richmond, British Columbia - December 2019
(Bob Sheppard was not available for the photograph)


Vesta Stevenson Alan Rust

We wish to honour the memories of
Vesta Stevenson and Alan Rust.
They remain a part of every edition published.

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