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  NetLetter #1322 | June 29, 2015  
  The ACFN NetLetter

The NetLetter

For Air Canada Retirees

Canada Day
  Hello Reader,  
  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. 

Women in Aviation

Found in "Horizons" magazine Issue October 1979
From Cabin to Cockpit

tmb britt marie ferstBritt Marie Ferst is the first Air Canada woman to move from the cabin to the cockpit duty. Britt Marie received her wings signifying her new rank as second officer. She took up her long dream of flying in 1973 and by 1976 had earned her commercial pilot's licence. She added balloons to her license and was first officer on the Air Canada balloon's inaugural flight at the 1978 Silver Broom curling at Winnipeg. 

After 6 years as a flight attendant, the Swedish born Britt Marie is flying on a DC-8 flight deck. She joined Judith Cameron and Gwen Grant as the third woman to enter the Air Canada line service.


Air Canada News

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Many Air Canada retirees were surprised to receive a letter from Air Canada in June titled "Opt-out of Air Canada Pension Funding Regulations, 2014"

Many retirees thought that this meant their Pensions were in jeopardy.

You'll be happy to know that this is not the case

If you are a Pionairs Member and on their mailing list, you should have already received an information letter explaining this, if not, this is how Bruce Aubin, Director Chair Pensions Sub-Committee explained it...

"I am aware some of our members are confused with the Company letter of June 2015 informing them of its decision to OPT-OUT of the Air Canada Pension Plan Funding Regulations 2014” This election by the Company has no impact on the security of our pensions. In fact it may be beneficial as it confirms that our Defined Benefit pension plans have been fully funded for the last two years. The plans are now subject to the same PBSA ( Pension Benefits Standards Act ) regulations as other federally registered private corporations.".

If you're presently not a Pionair Member and you want to be updated on Pension and other News, you can join at:


Reader Submitted Photos

Wayne Kirby sends these two photos -

Some photos you may like to use....
I flew the 'DC-3' but don't recognize anyone. (except Frank)

tmb hostesses

tmb sinatra with hostesses

Air Canada "Hostesses"

Frank Sinatra and "Hostesses"


Ron Rhodes sends these three photos-

tmb Malton seat

Celebrating 75 years of Toronto International, the GTAA has an exhibit of memorabilia in the Malton Room in Terminal One. One of the display cases includes some of my own TCA collection. Readers had only until sometime in April 2015 to view the exhibit. I visited it then and it is well done!

Thanks to Lee Petrie, Curator!! 

I attach a couple of photos of my collection and one of an original seat from Malton.

Ron Rhodes.

tmb malton exhibit
tmb mailton airport


TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery

tmb yvr yul mail fltThis image was found "somewhere", and refers to the inaugural flight from YVR to YUL

tmb avro jetliner

It was called the Avro Jetliner and it was North America's very first passenger jet.

Designed to meet the requirements of the old Trans-Canada Air Lines, now Air Canada, which requested a 36-seat passenger jet to travel at 425 miles an hour with refuelling range of 500 miles, the Avro Jetliner project began in 1946 at A.V. Roe Canada in Malton, Ont.

Jet engines were still fairly a new concept after the Second World War, but a prototype soon took flight in Toronto on Aug. 10, 1949 after some runway construction delays. This prevented the Jetliner from becoming the world's first flying passenger jet, a title grabbed by de Havilland when the company launched its Comet in Britain just 13 days before the Jetliner.

tmb t1 1965Anyone care to identify the people and location for this photo dated 1965?

tmb tca vintage uniforms

Mike Barbetta sent us a copy of "Altitude '80" issued June 1980.
We extracted this article -

TCA Reunion huge success.
More than 1200 turned out at the Sheraton Centre in Toronto on the weekend of May 23-25 for the first TCA Flight Attendant Alumni Reunion. Amid the nostalgia and the memories, the decision was unanimous... FANTASTIC! !

Weekend highlights included a lunch and fashion show and a Saturday evening Dinner dance, complete with an entertaining revue of the ''good old days'' presented by a troupe of volunteer performers. The TCA reunion was the brainchild of retired Flight Attendant Gretchen Marsh, who was aided by Helen McEwan, friend, neighbour, and still active Flight Attendant. Because of the TCA story, this issue of "Altitude" was sent to all Alumni members courtesy of In-Flight Service.

tmb tca reunion 1980

Flight Attendants past and present reunite. L-R (standing): Barry Kerr - Regional Catering & Commissary Manager, U.S. Region, unidentifled former F/A, John Jonker - former F/A YUL, Doug Robinson - DC-9 Captain, David Thompson - FSD, YVR, Tom Mills - Route Operations Manager, YYZ, Rudy Saretzky - retired F/A. YVR, John Pasche - In-Charge F/A, YYZ; seated: Gord Kay - FSD, YYZ, Ken Day - Manager, IFS Base, YVR, Ross St. John - Manager, IFS Base, YYC, Frank St. Hilaire – retired Supervisor, YUL. 

Gleaned from the “Between Ourselves” magazine.
Issued July 1942 –

The story by Frank Sayer entitled "Incredible inaugurations"
As those engaged in the operation of airlines are painfully aware, sometimes the weather gods are not propitious. And they seem to take a particularly keen delight in balling up the works for inaugural flights. Yet here the writer makes his obeisance and knocks on wood for he would not have them be the least suspicious of any impiety on his part.

Nevertheless, the sad story of that Moncton inaugural flights begins on February 11th,1940. when a party of newspapermen, myself included, gathered at the local airport for a projected round trip to Montreal that was to anticipate by four days the opening of regular passenger service between the two points.

The flight was inevitably cancelled. Reason? Weather.

Next came the extensions to Halifax and Charlottetown both scheduled for April 15,1941. The Charlottetown flight got as far as Summerside, landed there and came back to Moncton. The Halifax flight returned without landing.

Reason? Weather.

In the two instances the Premiers of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island were on the runways at Dartmouth and at Charlottetown waiting for the planes to arrive; while on board the Halifax trip were the President and Secretary of the Halifax Board of Trade, who, after being rolled interminably about in the fog were returned to earth and sent forward again this time by taxi. The cab blew two tires and our guests arrived home with the dawn.

(The story will conclude in NetLetter nr 1323 – eds)


Star Alliance News

Starting on October 25, 2015, United Airlines will cease operating flights from New York JFK International Airport and will shift all operations to Newark Liberty International Airport, the company has announced.


Alan's Space

You can't help but smile while watching this video of a father (in Quebec) taking his four year old on her first aerobatic flight. No translation is really required, but she is saying "Encore, encore!" (Again, again!) even before he has finished a roll. Her laughter is infectious.

Lea's first aerobatic flight


CPAir, Canadi>n People Gallery

CPAir/Canadian People Galler

During August 2013, Patty Schachter, nee McLafferty, donated some PWA in house magazines, "Flightlines", "Peformance", "BaseLink" and "Flash info". Patty included this back ground - I used to work on "Flightlines" for Pacific Western and when we bought CPAir, George McBurnie from CP and I were one of the very first departments to merge. We started "Info Canadi>n" together and went from there. The "Baselink" pages were specific to the Airport division when I worked there.

Extracted from “Info Canadi>n” magazine
Issue dated June 1991.
tmb cpa eva prytula

At the Vancouver Group Express office, sales agents Eva Prytula, left, and Pat Parsons are two of the 43 department agents empowered to make on-the-spot price decisions for customers.

tmb cpa keith pope

In this photo Keith Pope, left, the future general manager of UK, Ireland, Scandinavia, and Finland, was being introduced to the sights of London England by his predecessor Alan Tremblay. The two are standing in front of the famous Tower Bridge. Pope, general manager South Pacific, moved into his new role on Sept. 1st. Tremblay returned to Canada to take up the post of general manager, Ontario Sales.

tmb cpa Sharon Keau Chong

It's clearly cooler in Canada.
That play on words was the theme of Canadian's promotion in Hawaii. Employees delivered more than 1,000 cups and bottles of Clearly Canadian soft drinks to Hawaii travel agents to help them remember that Canada is cooler! Making the deliveries were, from the left, Sharon Keau-Chong, sales secretary, Rickard Tendo, passener sales manager and Danielle Dupont, customer service.


Readers Feedback

Don McKay refers to NetLetter nr 1317 and the photos -

The pictures included in the above NetLetter #1317 show the present Saint John after their move from Penfield. The year was 1954 I was in high school & lucky enough to get a summer ramp job slinging luggage. The aircraft that flew into YSJ at that time were DC -3, DC-4 and the old Bristol Freighter.

Hugh McEligatt was in charge of the downtown ticket office and he was also our next door neighbour. Bill Hegan was YSJ Station Manager & Alice was his secretary. I worked with Paul Mitchell on the ramp. Myron “Ziggy” Zegarchuk was a Radio Operator.

tmb bill scott

Bill Scott was the weight & balance man. I was lucky enough to land at YSJ the day Bill retired. I was Captain of a DC-9 at the time, I lucked in by operating a DC-9 that day, I have the picture that was taken that day with the DC -9 in the background. I have many happy memories from my time working the ramp for 2 summers.

tmb rcaf cf 104This photo is an RCAF CF-104 in Germany which I flew, few Canadians are aware of the fact that we had Nuclear Weapons on our aircraft in the early 60’s.

tmb chris hadfieldThis photo is Chris Hatfield & our oldest son, Dave, exchanging my book for a copy of Chris’s book.

tmb don mckayA photo of myself in 1956. Again thanks for the Penfield picture & the memories it rekindled.

Don McKay

Lauraine Pomerleau refers to NetLetter nr 1316 and sends this observation -

I believe that Air Canada started flying A320's around 1990. I know that I didn't write that recurrent exam in 1970. Was there a typo?
Cheers, Lauraine Pomerleau.

Chris Whelan sent us this comment regarding NetLetter nr 1316 -
Airbus A320 (January 25, 1990) Air Canada was the first airline in Canada to operate the Airbus A320. The airline took delivery of its first Airbus A320 on January 25, 1990 in Toulouse (France).

Richard Hovey wrote: OOPS. The A320 wasn’t around until 1989. You’ve got the wrong aircraft.

(Lauraine, Richard and Chris are correct regarding the date of the A320, but this information was from the "Rampage" magazine which, unfortunately, we no longer have any access to - eds)

Ron Lingwood sends these comments refers to NetLetter nr 1316 -

Thanks for the great job you all do, I look forward to my NetLetter but must remember not to store them in my Netflix file where some of them ended up for some reason. Looking at the latest edition with the cartoon of Stand-By passengers dress code. Gone are the days when we had to dress like we were going to a ball and suffer the discomfort of a long flight in a suit and tie in case we were lucky to get first class. When I worked for CP the dress code was the same, but one time they added the rider that we were to keep a low profile, to which I replied “low profile, but we are the best dressed passengers on the flight”.  It certainly would have been nice to have worn more relaxing attire on long trips. I have seen, as surely others have, track suits and such.

Thanks keep up the good work.

Ken Pickford, refers to the article about the spelling of Airlines v Air Lines in NetLetter nr 1321 sends his comments -

tmb CP001Re: the Canadian Pacific Air Lines (vs. Airlines) name. Canadian Pacific Air Lines, Limited, with "Air Lines" in two words, was always the legal name right until the 1987 acquisition by Pacific Western to create Canadian Airlines.

For marketing purposes they tended to use "Airlines" as one word except in the early years, and except of course during the roughly 18 years (1968-86) when the marketing name was CP Air. The "Airlines" word had been removed from the aircraft livery sometime in the mid-1950s, leaving just "Canadian Pacific".

Related info can be found at the Canada's Aviation Hall of Fame
(Please note the bottom of the cover of the 1983 annual report on the photo)

Pete Sleeman, in response to the appeal in NetLetter nr 1321 for donations towards the GIMLI Glider Project sent this memory -

Anthony, I will support this project.. .I flew that aircraft, (the Gimli Glider... I still remember hearing the news from a CPAir B737 crew in Fort St John when I was a Line Engineer there at the time. ) .... so my hands have been on those yokes after I became an AC pilot, albiet the yokes cleaned many times by Sani-Wipes by subsequent pilots.

Pete Sleeman


Odds and Ends

Here we have these two aerial views of Vancouver International airport (YVR) One dated 1968 and the other 2015.

tmb YVR 1968 tmb YVR Jan 2015


Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

The 48th AGM of the World Airlines Clubs Association (WACA) celebration is being held in Ho Chi Minh City October 18th - 23rd 2015. tmb ho chi minhFor interested parties, please register with Mr. Keith Miller at WACA headquarters at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For additional information about the tour, please contact any member of the WACA Council at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Registration deadline August 18th 2015.

There are exciting pre and post tours available with registration deadline July 23rd 2015. Full details at

After a great deal of time and effort, it is with regret that the Vancouver Interline Club has found it necessary to cancel the Great Circle Trip 2015 due to insufficient registrations at the deadline date.

Complete information about Air Canada's Travel Partner policy can be found on the Employee Travel Site under News & Policies > Eligible Passengers > Travel Partner. We encourage all employees and retirees to consult Air Canada policies prior to traveling.

Working with airline members of IATA and aircraft manufacturers, an optimum size guideline for carry-on bags has been agreed that will make the best use of cabin storage space. A size of 55 x 35 x 20 cm (or 21.5 x 13.5 x 7.5 inches) means that theoretically everyone should have a chance to store their carry-on bags on board aircraft of 120 seats or larger. Air Canada has no plans to change its carry-on baggage allowances or dimensions.
Nonetheless, Air Canada supports the general concept of harmonizing carry on requirements across the industry as it will make it easier for customers, particularly those connecting between different airlines.



From the "Between Ourselves" issued August 1951

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Terry Baker, Alan Rust, Wayne Albertson
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