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  NetLetter #1327 | September 27, 2015  
  The ACFN NetLetter

The NetLetter

For Air Canada Retirees

Lancastrian in Montreal
 Lancastrian in Montreal - 1943
  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. 

Coming Events


ACRA Badminton Tournament. (source UK Pionairs September newsletter).

This year’s annual ACRA Badminton Tournament will be held in Glasgow on the 15,16 and 17th of October 2015.


tmb badminton gla 2015It will be our 25th Anniversary and we would like to invite all those who have attended our past tournaments over the years to join us and help celebrate. We were here (in Glasgow) in 2009 and had a great time. We have a very attractive rate negotiated at the hotel which is right across from the airport.

There is great shopping downtown and if you have never seen Glasgow, this is your opportunity!! Our website is at

tmb badminton que 2014

If you attended the Quebec 2014 tournament why not come to Glasgow this year.


Reader Submitted Photos

We received this enquiry and photo from David Postle looking for Gordon Rubenok -

I am hoping you might be able to help with some information about one of your flying colleagues by the name of Gordon Rubenok. I believe he is sadly no longer with us, but I would be grateful if you were able to tell me anything about him. My reason for asking is that Gordon Rubenok came over to Britain during the Second World War and flew from Ballykelly in Ireland for 59 Squadron. My father was his navigator from December 1944 to the end of the war, and he spoke very highly of Mr Rubenok as a fellow crew member. My father often asked whether we could find out what he did after the war after the Squadron was broken up.

I do know that he went back to Canada and flew for Trans-Canada Air Lines, and I believe later Air Canada.

I do not know when he retired, but it was probably in the 1970s/80s. I do have a photograph of him with his crew in Ballykelly, and the operation records of his flights, and I would just appreciate finding out a little more about him, and even contacting his family if there are any people who would be willing to make contact.

tmb 59 squadron dec 1944I am attaching a photograph of Gordon Rubenok and his crew at Ballykelly in 1945. My father, John Postle, is seated on the left. Next to him is Gordon Rubenok, and the third on the right seated is Flight Lieutenant Robert Irving who was another navigator and sometimes Captain of the plane. Both Gordon Rubenok and my father were Flying Officers at that time. I do not know the names of any of the others. There were other Canadians flying at the same time. They flew Consolidated Liberators on Atlantic patrols.

Many thanks for your help.

Best Wishes, David Postle
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery

1940 apr1940 - April timetable from the private collection of David Zekria.        

1979 - Sept 17th - DC-9 fin 720 CF-TLU c/n 47196 was enroute from Boston to Yarmouth and Halifax when the rear pressure bulkhead failed and it lost its tail cone over the Atlantic. The aircraft, under the command of Captain G.D.Gill landed safely.

All 43 of the DC-9 fleet were immediately checked and two aircraft were found to have cracks of a minor nature and not considered critical in the same area and were withdrawn from service until they were repaired satisfactorily.

Gleaned from the "Horizons" magazine

Issue dated November 1979.
tmb marketing first golfIn 1979 the Marketing and Planning branch held its first Golf Tournament at the Candiac Golf Club in Montreal. The Scheduling group won the branch trophy for lowest average net score. Guy Chiasson, V.P. Passenger Planning & Marketing pictured center in the photo, presented the trophy to the winning team of, from the Ieft, Randy Corran, Jim Cochrane, Holly Ross, Mike Hewitt. Bud Sams. Guy Chiasson, Mary Sellier, Jack Israll and Arnie Heggen. 

tmb inflight excellenceIn-Flight Service presented its first Awards of Excellence to the following cabin crew employees.

Shown back row from the left are: Hans Mandt, Ute Mltchell, Isabel Rose, Jeanne Kerr, Maxine Belim, Louise Paul, Anne Meadows, Gudrun Papesch, Deborah Hall, Atsito Fujita and Hans Marchand.

Middle row: Lillian Kyle, Hans Ottinger. Kevin O'Connor, Robert Zimmerliand and Veronica Kuziomko.

Front row: Anne MacBeath, Linda Tanner, Helen Elsen and Llnda Meckling. Absent : Ursula Edwards and Anne Marie Emi.

tmb first in nairobiThe company had a new face in Nairobi heading up its operations in East Africa. Fridah Shiroya was appointed Sales Manager for the area encompassing Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Sudan, Zarnbia. Somalia, Rwanda, Burundi. Eihiopia. Mauritius and the Seychelles. She replaced Sid Dirks who opted for early retirement and took up the position of Managing Director of Air Kenya. Fridah was the first local person from Nairobi to be appointed as a regional-African inter-national airline. Fridah, seated is seen being congratulated by Sid and Margaret Ongaya, Sales Assistant.

tmb calpa agreementA NEW COLLECTIVE AGREEMENT on wages and working conditions was reached between the Company and the Canadian Air Line Pilots' Association. The agreement provided for pay increases for pilots flying present aircraft as well as for the Vanguards and DC-8's.

Shown signing the agreement is Captain J. H. Foy. President of CALPA; J. L. Rood, Director of Flight Operations; F.C.Eyre, Ass't Director, Industrial Relations and G.E.Bolton, Director Personnel.

Standing, from left: Captains F.E.W.Smith, J.G.LLoyd, A.D.Mills, A.T.Garmaise, legal council to CALPA; Captain Don Beatty and J„ K. Fraser, Ass't. to the Director of Flight Operations.

tmb tenby url emblemKenneth Swartz sends this url information of the Old TCA treasure trove from the web site of Henry Tenby.


Star Alliance News

tmb ana starwarsANA (All Nippon Airways) announced that they are very excited that at YVR we are to be the first destination for the special R2-D2 ANA JET.

This special Star Wars-themed Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will first fly at a fan appreciation event in Japan on the 17th before taking off overseas to Vancouver for its first international flight on October 18, 2015. The extremely popular film franchise will be releasing the latest film in the series just a couple of months later so we are sure that plane spotters and Star Wars fans alike will want to catch a glimpse or take a ride on this rare bird.

After visiting YVR the plane will continue on to other international destinations such as San Jose, Seattle, Sydney, Munich and Paris leading up to the release of Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens on December 18, 2015.


Wayne's Wings

wayne albertson articlesOn a Cribbage Holiday

I have not been able to research airline material for this edition because I have been indulging myself in my passion for Cribbage, travelling to Omaha, Nebraska and Yankton, South Dakota to participate in tournaments.

Scroll down to the Readers' Feedback section for a few fascinating comments submitted by readers in response to my previous articles. 


Alan's Space

Alan Rust

Aviation Week Network and Boeing -
100 Years of Aerospace Achievements

To commemorate their 100th anniversaries in 2016, Aviation Week Network and Boeing have agreed to create a living archive of all Aviation Week & Space Technology editions, dating back to the earliest years of human flight.

The digital, searchable archive, scheduled for completion in early 2016, will comprise more than 500,000 pages of articles, photographs and advertisements chronicling the first century of the aerospace and defense industry — unlocked and made available for the very first time. The archive will be dynamically updated as new Aviation Week content is developed.

See: for complete information. See video below.
aviation 100 years550x360


CPAir, Canadi>n People Gallery

CPAir/Canadian People Galler
nordair timetableEarly Nordair timetable found on the internet.

Found in the "Info Canadia>n" magazine issue dated August 1993

tmb cpa toronto wing walkersJune 1993 was when the International Dragon Boat races were held in Toronto. Proudly holding up Canadian's banner are the Toronto" Wingwalkers":
John Guerrero, Mike Roberts, Ed Chiu, Jose Bernaro, Mike Simon, Adrian Uhraney
Rhoel Ruperto, Ron Groll, Lori Owens, Harold MacKenzie, Richard Willmot, Ramon Manglal-Ian, Lino Distefano, Gord Henderson, Alex Simon, Wayne Hawkins, Albino Moldes, Larry Filipek, Rocco Chirichiello, Spencer Lui,Parker Chong, and Daniel Pyn Knoski.

tmb cpa yvr jet paddlersFresh from a fifth place finish (out of 40 boats in the recreational division) is the Vancouver " Jet Paddlers":
Back from left: Pat Truelove, Steve Bains, Eva Prytula, Moira Rondeau, Kevin Hong, Marlene Rochon, Janice Lowe, Dave Cox, Tomrny Man, Trevor Pudar, Michael and Pauline Sameshima, Kelly Brownlow, Kevin Ahmon; front from left: Gord and Jackie Ki, Tracey MacKenzie, Peter Gauthier, Sara Austin-Smith, Mike Paddon, Gayle Gordon, and Roy Sakashita. Missing is Louise Lamb, Andrew Tsang, Pam Holmes,Veronica Fong (manager) and Preston Wong (coach).


Readers Feedback

Lorne Paterson is asking for our help -

Art “Chevy” Cooper passed away recently at the age of 97 years. What I am trying to ascertain is if he was the last living member of the mechanics in Montreal or elsewhere who actually worked on the Lancastrian which was the new TCA international overseas operations aircraft. Anyone else out there? They were and are a rare part of the history of TCA/AC. Any information would be appreciated.

Thanks Lorne Paterson
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Ken Pickford refers to NetLetter #1325 and sends this -

Just received #1325. Haven't read it yet but the opening DC-8 photo caught my eye. That's not a Rolls-Royce Conway-powered DC-8. It's a stretched DC-8-63 with Pratt & Whitney JT3D-7 engines. Only AC's first 11 (of a total 42) factory-delivered DC-8s were Rolls-Royce Conway-powered (the -40 series models). The other 31 all had varying models of the Pratt & Whitney JT3D. CP's first 6 DC-8s were also Conway-powered. Five of AC's DC-8-63s were later converted to freighters, including re-engining with the CFM56 engine, the original model of the engine that now powers AC's Airbus A319/320/321s. The re-engined freighters became DC-8-73Fs.

(From Alan - Thanks for the correction - I should have really noticed this as I worked on these aircraft in the 70's before they were sold. I was using info from the site where I obtained the photo. I've corrected the caption in the back issue now)

Regarding “Alan’s Space” Ken Pickford tells us -
Regarding the "Ten things you didn't know about AC" from the Globe and Mail:

  1. The second photo caption says it's TCA's first aircraft, CF-TCA, which would have been a Lockheed 10A Electra like CF-TCC in the first photo. The 2nd photo is of a larger Lockheed 14 Super Electra, not a 10A.
  2. The third photo caption refers to 22 Viscounts built for TCA. TCA took delivery of 51 Viscounts, not 22.

Regards, Ken

And Garnet Ross sends this –

Regarding NetLetter # 1325 and the top picture of an Air Canada DC 8 on landing approach. The caption says DC 8 YVR Conway Engines. The photo is of a DC 8-63 stretch series aircraft that had Pratt and Whitney engines, not Rolls Royce Conway Bypass engines. I believe the Pratt and Whitney engines were JT3D engines. The Rolls Royce Conway Bypass engines were installed on the smaller DC 8 series 41 and 43 models. The FIN numbers of these aircraft were 801 through 811. The aircraft shown would be DC 8 63’s with FIN numbers 867 through 879.

Close but no cigar. Garnet Ross AC078537 Air Canada Cargo Toronto 410

Wayne Albertson responds to the comments on his "Wayne's Wings" in NetLetter #1325 -

I love the responses we are getting concerning the DC 8 story. I guess that being wrong about a few details gets people's attention. I don't mind being corrected at all as my goal is to open up discussion and hopefully have people submit the special memories of a fleet or a specific aircraft. Obviously, the DC8 era was special and spans generations and I would like to thank everyone for sharing their comments and experiences.

Here are the replies we have received -

Jim Coupethwaite writes -
Regarding the DC8 question. Maybe this is the answer. The first acft were delivered without galleys. The TCA designed galleys were not ready to be installed by Douglas, so had to be done by TCA in Montreal & the acft certified/re-certified after the galleys were installed. Jim Coupethwaite, Montreal

From Ken Pickford who writes -
I spotted another error in Wayne Albertson's item on the DC-8. In paragraph 2, the reference to Fin #817 as the aircraft that carried the Queen home after a visit to Canada in October 1964 (and the first aircraft to wear the new AC name and livery) is incorrect. tmb fin817 new livery

She most definitely returned on a Rolls-Royce Conway-powered aircraft, Fin #809. The backup aircraft was Fin #802.

That history has been mentioned several times in The NetLetter, including #971 with a lengthy article by Bill Norberg who was directly involved in preparations for that Royal flight. See paragraph 4 in NetLetter # 971 here.

Regards, Ken

(However, a separate article in the "Between Ourselves" issued November 1964 indicates the fin number was 807.- eds)

Dennis Giguere tells us-

Re fin 804 delivery before 801/802/803. I believe they were part of the certification program used in flight testing.

Dennis Giguere, AC Captain Retired

Vic Rivers gives us some insight to the CPA DC-8 -

Further to Wayne Albertson's discussion about the DC-8, fin 602 belonging to CPAL officially flew supersonic in the early '60's with Douglas test pilots at the controls. It occurred during test of the 4% leading edge modification to improve fuel consumption. There was a plaque mounted in the forward galley area noting the event.

We had a thick file about the event with photos and data in Flight Technical Services in the 1970's but where that went is anyone's guess. Not surprisingly, the plaque disappeared, probably to someone's rec room.

Attempts were made to save this aircraft from the scrap yard by some employees but CP Limited who actually was the aircraft's owner, wouldn't give it to the Museum of Flight, and they wouldn't/couldn't pay the price for it so it went to the chopping block. I spotted the aircraft at Miami Airport a short time later.

Vic Rivers

Peter Sutherland sends this memory -

As a Cargo Biller working in Building 107 on LHR’s north side, I remember the Queen’s flight arriving. I seem to recall she previously flew RCAF Canadair transport and this was the first time she had flown on a commercial (albeit, reconfigured) aircraft from Canada. However, I am certain that the date was in August 1967 (not 1964, as stated) when she returned home from visiting the ‘Expo 67’ fair in Montreal. Aircraft 817 (CF-TJQ) was, indeed, the first to be seen at LHR with the new colour scheme.

Back in those days, the commissary boys used to share any left-over meals, etc., with other staff members rather than consign good food to the trash. One of my enduring memories of that day was being given a partly full bottle of “Liebfraumilch” German Reisling wine and a plate of sliced madeira cake! We all assumed Her Majesty had drunk the wine from that very bottle and nibbled some of those cakes!

Cheers, Peter Sutherland, ACLHR 1964-1974

(We did confirm to Peter that on checking with the November 1964 “Between Ourselves” magazine, we note that DC-8 fin 807 was used at the conclusion of the QEII visit returning her on October 13th 1964..- eds)
(From Alan - I'm sure the Queen used a glass and didn't drink from the bottle)

T.A.Thusska refers to Wayne's Wings query in NetLetter #1326 - 

The L1011 on the Papal flight September 20, 1984.
Fin # 555. Flight from YOW to CIA, Rome's military airport. There were actually 2 L1011 - 500 aircraft configured for the return. Second parked behind the first with both aircraft receiving same amenities and security treatment in the event that problems were found readying 555 for flight.

Fin 555 first class section had a king size bed replacing all seats except for 2 seats 1 A and B if I recall correctly. A second crew readied A/C # 2 with identical route flight plan input and I assume it was fueled and readied as was the actual aircraft. (Fin 555).

PS. At the end of the flight each crew member had a private visit with His Holiness using 1A and B for this..
Photos were taken and sent to each crew members home, front and back end crews. It was over an hour before the Pope left the aircraft following arrival and this Papal honor.

Attached are 2 pics taken by me from Flight Deck, the second pic shows the helicopter he boarded for parts unknown.

Captain T. A. Thususka (Retired)

 tmb pope 01  tmb pope 02

Wayne responded to Captain Thususka

Thank you very much for the clarification. I thought it was "Triple Nickel" but I could not be sure. I delivered the new wheel assemblies to maintenance in the hangar that night and climbed the stairs to have a quick look at the first class section. Certainly something that would never be permitted today.



Odds and Ends

Conclusion of the story from NetLetter #1325 and 1326 sent by Betty Draper, more information of the early days in aviation in Canada.

No Cachets Used.
As the flight was purely experimental, no cachets were stamped on the covers. First flight covers may be expected when the service proper opens. A few minutes before 10 o'clock, Pilot Seagram reported the machine riding the eastern leg of the Regina radio range, and he was advised of the fog over Regina. "Believe fog is purely local condition. We'll carry on flight course." came the crackling reply. Breaking into the ether waves officers of the meteorological office, busy as bees assembling weather data, reported conditions over Regina, Lethbridge, Maple Creek with visibility over Regina limited to one-quarter of a mile.

As the machine neared the city, Dispatcher Williamson was in telephone communication with Moose Jaw arranging for delivery of gas and oil at that point, and obtaining data on condition of  the Moose Jaw field, which has no runways and was covered in spots by a foot of snow, in case the crew continued to Moose Jaw.

Mile above Prairies
Flying at 8,000 feet, the machine passed over the city with a muffled roar, and dispatcher Williamson, standing out on the field with a extension phone, reported: "You are directly north of the airport.",

 "The fog is spotty. We can see Moose Jaw. Will hang around up here for 10 or 15 minutes," came the reply.

At 11:20 a.m., another report came from overhead. "Fog 12 foot thick. We are going west." The roar of the big Lockheed Electra died away as orders came from Winnipeg for the machine to land at Moose Jaw if Regina's fog did not clear, but a few minutes later, the pilots reported they were going to "Try for a landing." the machine roared back and crossed over the field at 500 feet.

Lost again in the fog, it could be heard to circle the city, then the roar died away and the machine nosed out of a thick ground fog and taxied to the hangar. Smiling, the youthful pilots, in business suits, stepped out to report, unloaded their mail, obtained weather reports, and roared westward again after a 15 minute stop. Conditions cleared over Regina before the machine left and weather at Maple Creek and Lethbridge was reported good

New York Air Service Speeded.
Air mail service from Regina to New York has been improved by more than eight hours, according to an announcement made by Leo LaBelle, Regina postmaster. Trans-Canada Air Lines have now arranged a service connecting Toronto with New York and all mail from the west  will now go by Toronto rather than Montreal to New York. A 13-hour and 23 minute service is now available from Regina to New York for mail going out on the eastbound afternoon plane. Mail leaving Regina at 12.05 noon will arrive in New York at 1:30 the next morning and will be delivered in New York during the morning. A faster service is provided by the night plane but it will be delivered later in New York. The plane leaves Regina at 11.05 standard time in the evening.

Betty Draper found this article in the Leader-Post dated March 1st, 1963 -

TCA lends three planes to TransAir.
Trans-Canada Air Lines will be loaning three aircraft - 2 DC-3 and a Viscount - to operate the Prairie regional routes in Saskatchewan. No cash payment by TransAir would be involved since it was taking over unprofitable lines for TCA. TCA will be making other routes available to TransAir.

Office facilities for ticket sales would be offered. Spare parts would be put at the disposal of TransAir and TCA will do the maintenance on the Viscount. When Pacific Western Airlines operated the northern part of the regional service up until the fall of 1962 before the North Battleford link was eliminated the government  paid a $25,000 monthly subsidy. This was cut off when TCA took over. The crown air company (TCA) financed the operating loss out of its own funds. Under the new agreement, TCA will continue to help finance the operation through the loan of facilities but no direct cash payment to TransAir is to be made.


Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

Terry Baker

The government of Canada has recently updated its entry requirements for travellers to Canada arriving by air.

Beginning March 15, 2016, foreign national visitors without visas will need an Electronic Travel Authorization, or eTA, to enter Canada. This new entry requirement does not apply to U.S. citizens and travellers with a valid visa.

Applying for an eTA online is straightforward and inexpensive. Eligible travellers need their passport, a credit card, an email address and a few minutes to complete the form. In most cases, travellers receive their authorization just minutes after application.

tmb eta emblemThe eTA costs $7CDN per traveller, is electronically linked to a traveller’s passport and valid for five years (or until the passport expires, whichever comes first.) It’s best to apply and receive your eTA before booking a flight.
Be sure to check out the detailed requirements - and instructional video - on the Government of Canada’s website before booking an international flight to Canada, or if you have friends or family flying to Canada after March 15.
(source yvr newsletter)

Aureen and Jack Morath from LHR recently took this cruise which may be of interest to those intrepid travelers contemplating such a cruise -

Recently Aureen and I took a cruise from Singapore to Hong Kong lasting 14 days, and in Singapore we were joined by Steve and Gina Hodder who were already in Thailand, and also by Eugene and Wendy Green who flew in from London via Air Canada and Vancouver.

We had booked the cruise through Dargal and obtained a very good deal cruising with Holland America on their ship the Volendam. The ship's master was an Englishman from Cornwall being Captain James Russell-Dunford.

After one day at sea we arrived at the Thai island of Koh Samui at 7.00am and departing at 3.00pm - enough time to explore the town of Nathan. The next morning and still in Thailand we stopped at the port of Laem Chabang for two days giving time for those who wanted to take a tour to Bangkok 90 miles away. The next morning we arrived at 8.00am in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. A very interesting stop and a full day to explore the city until we departed at 11.00pm. Next day at sea before arriving in Phu My, Vietnam, and another quite different country arriving at 6.00am and departing at 5.00pm. At all of the stops on the cruise the ladies loved wandering round the markets. (not sure about the men though!)

The next day in Vietnam we arrived at 10.00am in Nha Trang. We set sail at 11.00pm for another day at sea arriving in Da Nang, also in Vietnam for a full day. We were at sea the following day before arriving at 7.00 am in Halong Bay, the most interesting of all our stops. We departed at 11.00pm for another day at sea before arriving in Hong Kong at 7.00 am on 2nd March.

The sea was calm throughout the voyage and the weather was sometimes hot and sometimes cool and with just a couple of showers. The total distance covered on the cruise was 2750 nautical miles. In Hong Kong we split up to go our different ways; Steve and Gina to their bungalow in Thailand, Eugene and Wendy back to England on Air Canada via Vancouver, and Aureen and I took the train for two hours to Guangzhou to visit our son and family in China. Overall a most enjoyable cruise exploring the Far East of Asia.

(Report by Jack Morath extracted from the June Pionairs LHR newsletter)



tmb password 1327A self-explanatory cartoon (at left).

Overheard at the airport. 

The passenger had just deplaned from an Air Canada rouge flight.
“What an experience, talk about being treated like a sardine.
I think the name of the airline had a misplaced letter “u” and should be named rogue”.

Carol Vickers sends this –
It's an old clipping I found from Believe It Or Not. It's amazing to see history of the old days.

Look out below...
Apparently there was a danger of bodies and cigar butts falling from the air in the 40's because in 1947 Trans-Canada Air Lines (Air Canada) instructed its stewardesses, among other things, to tell passengers not to throw cigar butts out of plane windows. They were also warned to make sure that passengers going to the washroom didn't go out the emergency exit by mistake.

Terry Baker, Alan Rust, Wayne Albertson
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