If you can't see this e-mail properly, you can also view it online

NetLetter #1318 | May 02, 2015

  The ACFN NetLetter

The NetLetter

For Air Canada Retirees

  Hello ,  
  Welcome to the NetLetter, an Aviation based newsletter for Air Canada, TCA, CPAir, Canadian Airlines and all other Canadian based airlines that once graced the Canadian skies.

The NetLetter was created in 1995 by Vesta Stevenson (RIP) and Terry Baker and is normally published every two weeks (we're late sometimes). If you are interested in Canadian Aviation History, and vintage aviation photos, especially as it relates to Trans-Canada Air Lines and Air Canada then we're sure you'll enjoy this free newsletter. We've just upgraded to a new mailing system and website so many new features will soon be added

ACFN/NetLetter News

1976 Claude Taylor TAYLOR, Claude - May 20, 1925 - April 23, 2015

It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Claude Taylor, past President and CEO of Air Canada from 1976 to 1984. Claude would have turned 90 years old on May 20th.

Claude joined Trans-Canada Air Lines in 1949 in Moncton, NB as a reservations clerk in the Traffic Division remaining with the company and rising to become President and CEO of Air Canada in 1976, then Chairman in 1984. He remained with Air Canada, in Executive and Board positions, through the late 1990s - a career spanning nearly 50 years in the airline and aviation industry. - See complete obituary at:


The family would like to invite all, especially his extended Air Canada family, to express their condolences and, especially, to celebrate his life and share their memories of him, at one of Dad’s favourite places, the Forest & Stream Club, 1800 Lakeshore Drive, Dorval, (2.1 kms west of Dorval Avenue) on Monday, May 4th from 2pm TO 7pm.


Articles about Claude Taylor

Memories of Claude Taylor

"Claude Taylor was a friend and mentor to many. He had the rare ability ,in a modest and natural way, to inspire his colleagues to do their very best.He had mastered the art being inclusive, thus embracing the hearts and inspiring the minds of others to pull together to accomplish their big dreams

We will miss him very much. He will be in our hearts,thoughts and prayers. John Wildman"

"He was a gentleman and a very generous man, he was in my opinion Air Canada...all who worked for him loved him, he was an inspiration to all of us. He will always be remembered for his kind demeanour and love of the Airline and his employees had a great respect for him, which encouraged them to work that much harder as he was our mentor...we all believed in him. May he rest in peace, God bless his family at this difficult time
Sincerely, Leda Millar"


Upcoming Events


Pionairs National Golf 2015

Registration Cut off date has been extended to Friday, June 5, 2015! 
Open to non-Pionair Members as well this year...

Register now!

CAHS Banner

Mark your calendars! The Canadian Aviation Historical Society (CAHS) will be holding its 52nd National Convention and Annual General Meeting in Hamilton, Ontario, on 17-21 June 2015 at the Courtyard Marriott Hotel.

For complete details, please visit


Women in Aviation


thumb Harriet Quimby

The English Channel is notorious for fog, rain and high winds, and flying a single engine aircraft from Dover to Calais in 1912 was dicey to say the least.

So when Harriet Quimby started her engine at 5:30 am, her success was hardly assured, in fact, a male pilot friend of hers offered to make the trip instead and give her credit, not believing she could do the trip.

That just made her more determined. After she had completed her trip, local fishermen toasted her, but celebrations were short-lived as word of the Titanic's sinking eclipsed any other news. Quimby herself did not have long to enjoy her glory, she died in an air-show crash less than 3 weeks later.


Air Canada News


Air Canada finalized new collective bargaining agreement (to expire mid-2019) with its US.-based workforce represented by IBT.


TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery


TCA/AC People Gallery

1939 - Nov 1st - First flight Montreal-Moncton.


  • April 1st - New quarters for TCA opened at Lakehead airport.
  • April 25th - North Star service inaugurated to Regina replacing DC-3.
  • April 27th - North Star service inaugurated to Lethbridge replacing DC-3.

An extract from the "Between Ourselves" magazine Issue dated June 1953

thumb moncton terminal 1953Moncton was one of the original terminals for inter-city air travel in Canada. Back in the winter of 1927-28, air service out of Moncton to the Magdelan Islands on the Gulf of St.Lawrence was inaugurated. Passengers were carried "space available", after mail and the only shelter for them as they awaited their flight was a workshop at Cook's Brook. The flights were operated off the ice. The original schedule out of the Maritime point was followed in 1928-29 by an air mail and passenger service to Summerside and Charlottetown. Operations were moved from the ice at Cook's Brook to a sod covered field near the city, and, in the winter the combination office-waiting room had an old coal stove in the centre, where passengers warmed themselves after driving some four miles by horse and sled.

This, of course, is a far cry from conditions that Moncton air travelers find today. It was the fall of 1939 that the airport at Moncton was opened and TCA operated the first Montreal-Moncton flight on November 1st., and not until 1942 before TCA inaugurated daily Moncton-Sydney-St.John's, Newfoundland. After the war there were inadequate quarters due to building restrictions. In the summer of 1951, the D.O.T. commenced building a new terminal when, on October 4th, 1951, a fire razed the complete building.

Construction was began again and, on the March 23rd., 1952 the new terminal was officially opened, and two major airlines operated out of Moncton, Trans-Canada Air Lines (TCA) and Maritime Central Airways (MCA).

Issue dated September 1959
A 1.5 million dollar computer centre ordered for Electronic Reservations system. The centre was built by Ferranti-Packard Electric Ltd, in operation 1961. The same company was awarded a 2 million dollar contract in March 1959 to build field equipment for the reservations system.


Al Brown, Noel Humphrys and Dick Williams were busy in Canada in an exciting new business. They were radio operators with TCA, Canada's new dynamic airline venture. They were called Radio Operators, but if they had a hat for every different job they did, they could have kept a haberdashery in business. They made out local sheets, took weather observations, helped to sort out aircraft and crew routing problems, and in between times talked by radio to our brand new Lockheed Electras in the air. Art Rankin, Kelly Edinison, Ted Stull and many other of our first pilots became accustomed to hearing these men on the ground, and came to rely on their judgment in many conditions. And so began the TCA Flight Dispatch era.

January 1st, 1940 is the date Noel Humphrys and Dick Williams officially started as Flight Control Officers (later changed to Flight Dispatchers) and a system of operational control was formally recognized.

thumb stewardessesTCA's Stewardesses training was the subject, in part, of a book on ''Stewardess as a career''. Well known writer-photographer Jack Engeman seen snapping three radiant graduates of the previous day, had just returned home to Baltimore after having completed the second of his two week photo coverage on classroom work for the stewardesses-to-be. The first week was spent amidst the thirty-odd beginners on their first week of training. His book, the seventh in a series on careers was distributed during September of 1960. The girls seen arranging Micheline Beland's uniform in the center, are Barbara Sander left, and Sheila Stiles on the right.

Viscount hits wandering deer.
One night late in July 1959, a stray deer fell prey to the whirling propeller of an inbound Viscount at Saint John, N.B., and was buried by a Municipal Airport crew alongside the runway on which it was hit.
The accident happened as flight 425 from Montreal and Fredericton touched down on what to be a brief stop before continuing on to Halifax.

One of the passengers saw the accident and he called Stewardess Alice Francis, "I think we hit a deer." She informed the pilot, Captain Donald Dubrueil, of Montreal, who swung the aircraft and picked up the body of a big buck deer and its sheared antlers in his landing lights.

As a precautionary measure the aircraft was grounded and the remainder of the passengers bound for other parts of the Maritimes were placed aboard another aircraft.

thumb chicago staff 1959Chicago employees stop to pose for the camera during their annual Summer Dance. They are, from the left: W. H. Rourke, Miss C. M. Johnson, Mr. and Mrs. G. N. Leather, Mrs. R. W. Miles, R. W. Miles, Mrs. L. E. Timbers, Mr. and Mrs. A. C. Douglas, Mrs P. McCoy, P. McCoy and Miss M. Rackow.


Alan's Space

Watch the Royal Canadian Air Force 431 Air Demonstration Squadron (Snowbirds) practice their 2015 show in the skies over beautiful Comox Valley, British Columbia. A "tankcam" was mounted underneath the aircraft for this video. (Submitted by Stephen Elmy)

 Snow Birds Tank Cam


CPAir, Canadi>n People Gallery

CPAir/Canadian People Galler


Chris Best, Publisher, Warfleet sends this information -

'An Insider's Story of the Rise & Fall of Canadian Airlines' by Sid Fattedad
Sid Fattedad started his career with CP Air in 1968 and worked his way up through the accounting department to become CFO. When CP was taken over by PWA he was appointed VP of the Pacific Division, the most profitable division in the company.

Eventually he became VP of Quality Control for CAIL before retiring in 1992. It wasn't long though before he heard of a possible merger with Air Canada and came out of retirement to Chair the CCAE (a group of airline employees attempting to buy the company and stop the merger). As we all know it failed and finally CAIL merged with Air Canada.

Sid went on to a second career before retiring for good. Feeling the story of what actually happened during those turbulent times at CAIL he always said he would one day write a book and that day has finally come. His aim in writing the book is to get as many people as possible discussing those days and to fill in the blanks and question marks that have always remained in many people's minds. Sid's book costs $29.95 plus $2 GST and is published by Warfleet To order a copy please send an email to the publisher: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Extracted from the "PWA Flightlines" magazine - Issue dated June 1986

thumb pwa john spronkCapt. John Spronk has a glass of champagne after completing his last flight before retirement from Pacific Western Airlines. Wishing him the best are his fellow pilots (from left) Capt. Roy Reaville, First Officer Colin Egan, and First Officer Gavin Brown.


Captain Mike Halicki celebrates his retirement thumb pwa mike halickiflight at the end of May with his wife Vi, a former Pacific Western Flight Attendant and the many who met the arrival of his last flight. YWG Flight Attendant Denise Schilke is about to offer her congratulations as well.



Issue dated January 1987 -
Quebecair Takeover Approved
The takeover of Quebecair by Nordair-Metro was approved January 15, 1987 by the Canadian Transport Commission. The commission received requests from at least 50 Quebec communities, organizations and individuals opposed to the takeover. They wanted public hearings to voice their objections to the takeover because of fears it was causing poor service to many areas of the province.
Nordair-Metro is a subsidiary of Nordair, a regional airline bought by Canadian Pacific Air Lines, which has since been bought by Pacific Western Airlines.

thumb pwa heather jacksonHeather Jackson, Inflight, YXD fills glasses with ice in the back galley in preparation for serving passengers. Photo by Brad Shannon YVR Commissary.

As of February 1, 1987 there was a slightly different look at ticket counters
and on aircraft throughout Pacific Western's system. Customer Service Agents and Flight Attendants were sporting brand new uniform shirts, blouses, ties and scarves. (There were no photos available - eds)


Readers Submitted Photos

Robert Arnold sends is some more photos -
I have included a few more images from my collection of Jim Bruce material which he kindly handed over to me a few years ago. The following photos show Viscount Maintenance in Winnipeg back in July 1958. They were taken by Winnipeg based TCA staff photographer Vince MacDonald. These photos show three different views of Viscount # 612, CF-TGT sporting a newly painted "white top" livery. You will note the fleet number is still located on the radome. It was later relocated to the upper part of the fin, nose wheel cover and rudder. Would any readers know who the gentlemen are in these photos?

thumb cf tgt ywg 1  thumb cf tgt ywg 2 
 thumb cf tgt ywg 3


Readers Feedback

Lilian Fleming (RIP)

Lilian Fleming

It is with great sadness that I wanted to let you know about the death of my mother Lilian Fleming. My Mom retired from Canadian Airlines in 1993 after 16 years as a "re-tread" flight attendant. (My father Earle, a CP Air pilot, passed away last June).


We are holding a Celebration of Life for Mom on Sunday, May 3, 2015 between noon and 4 PM and wanted to invite any of her old colleagues. The address is: 4446 Dawn Dr. in Ladner. Contact phone number is myself at 604-512-2580.


If you could disseminate this info to the group it would be greatly appreciated. You can read the full (interesting) obituary of Lilian by clicking here.

(The NetLetter staff are very sorry to hear of your loss)

Brian Walsh sends this information
You had a story from Info Canadian (1990) in NetLetter no. 1314, The quote: "In this photo, Kathy Mullen, payload control manager, regional, Vancouver and Dominic lannitti, lead station attendant, ... unquote. Dominic was not a lead station attendant. Station attendants worked on the ramp. Dominic was a Lead Customer Service Agent. Cheers... Brian Walsh
(The NetLetter rechecked the magazine and the information in the magazine indicates Dominic as a Station Attendant. - eds) 

An extract from The Leader-Post dated January 5th, 1939 sent in by Betty Draper -
The oddest New Year observations of all probably came aboard a TCA plane flying westward from Winnipeg December 31st, 1938. The pilot was Jack Barclay, and passengers were inspectors J.R.Robertson and W.S.Lawson. At midnight, Central Standard time, pilot Barclay stuck his head into the passenger cabin and whooped "Yippee!". The two inspectors responded "Yippee! Happy New Year." That was over Portage La Prairie, Man. An hour later, somewhere near Moosomin, at midnight, Mountain Standard time, Pilot Barclay's head reappeared. "Yippee! Happy New Year again." he whooped. "Happy New Year." whooped the inspectors. They landed at Regina about 12:25 a.m. New Years day. They had marked 1939's arrival twice, and neither of them at home, where they had hoped to be.

Jack Morath has sent us this url about the Lancaster in the UK -
This is just the trailer - will be fantastic when the full documentary is released later in the year.




Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

Terry Baker

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

At the fear of boring you, I thought that I would tell you about my jaunt to Antigua as part of the CANAC scheme -

One late Thursday afternoon in April, 1976, I was in the little boy’s room minding my own business when my manager, Ken Taylor, arrived for a similar purpose.

He asked me 'How's your RPG?' (I hasten to add that RPG is a programming language!) - I told him that it was 'OK, a little rusty' (Not one to admit to my shortcomings). He asked me to see him in his office before days end. At the meeting, I was told about the temporary job, in Antigua, to look after some programming chores until they could find a permanent replacement. If I was interested, he asked me to have my answer for the next day.

After talking it over with my family, I agreed to give it a try, with certain conditions - namely a refresher course on RPG language. I then found out that the date of my departure was to be on the Monday, a week later. Panic set in. I knew I could not learn RPG in one week. I contacted IBM to have them send me a set of tutorials via courier. These arrived on the Thursday and I spent the remaining 3 days learning tne RPG language up, and also on the flight down to Antigua.

Upon arrival at Antigua, I was met by the person I was replacing, and he told me that he was leaving in 2 days time to a new job in the USA. We went straight to the office and, after being introduced to David Attale, VP Finance under whom I would be working, and the keypunch staff in the office, I was shown the System 3 computer system which, I then found out, I was expected to operate - more panic as I had never seen such a machine before, let alone operate one.

I got a crash course in the operation and the present incumbent gave me a list of do's and don'ts and left me to make what ever I could of it, he told me not to worry about any mistakes, as everything was backed up, and he would set me right later in the week end - what a way to operate.

Naturally I made my share of goofs, but gradually it sank in, and by the time he left I was doing OK. I made several mistakes after he left, but recovered OK, and David Attale was very accommodating. My major mistake was paying the pilots double salary and got a real !%&*%# from the Chief Pilot. After several days I had to use the back-up system to get out of a problem and was mortified when I found out that the back-up records were on the same disk as the original, so I had to do some fancy footwork to get out of that problem and got the back-ups onto another disk and did daily back-ups instead of weekly ones.

(to be continued in NetLetter nr 1319 - eds)



Aviation Humour

Found in the "Between Ourselves" magazine - Issued dated September 1959

This advert was voted "Best of the month" during 1959.

 1959 advert

If you would like to be removed from this mailing list, then please, unsubscribe