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NetLetter #1347 | July 24, 2016
The NetLetter

C-GAUN - Fin 604 - The "Gimli Glider" 

Dear 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 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. Our website is located at


ACFN/NetLetter News

Ken Pickford - NetLetter Proofreader

We'd like to publicly thank and acknowledge Ken Pickford who has recently volunteered to proof the NetLetter for us before it arrives in your inbox. Ken is a long time NetLetter subscriber as well as being very knowledgeable in regard to sentence structure, punctuation, spelling, aviation in general, dates of events, as well as in aircraft details and identification. Since our long term intent is to have the NetLetter as a historical resource for future generations, it's important to have our facts correct.

We thank you for your continued assistance, Ken, and your attention to detail.

The NetLetter Team
(Terry, Alan and Wayne)

Patrick Kessack, LHR retiree, sends this request -

I am a retired TWA/AA employee who was based at LHR for 32 years latterly as Ramp Ops Manager based in Terminal 3.

My inquiry concerns a former Air Canada LHR employee who worked in Passenger Service in Terminal 3 in the late 1960s. Her married name was Anna Walker. She was of Russian parentage and was raised in Perth Western Australia and made her way to the U.K. circa 1965/66 where she joined AC and shortly thereafter married Cyril Walker in late 1966 or early 1967. She continued to work for AC for a number of years into the 1970s after her marriage.

I wonder if there is anyone in the U.K. AC Family or UK/EC Pionairs that might be able to help me make contact with this lady. I worked very closely with a number of AC management personnel at Heathrow during the 1970s/80s and 90s on AOC matters. Names that readily come to mind are Peter Baldry, Tony Coleman, Jack Morath, Peter Kemp, Andy Burgess, Derek Buckel.

Any help you are able to provide in making contact with any of the above personnel would be most appreciated.

Patrick Kessack

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to contact Patrick


Women in Aviation

Laszlo Bastyovanszky sent us this information -

tmb judy cameron stampAn Oakville woman, who was Air Canada’s first female pilot in 1978, was immortalized on a Canadian postage stamp earlier this month at a ceremony in Mississauga. Judy Cameron, who has called Oakville home since 1981, said she is honoured to have her image placed on a stamp, which was commissioned by the international organization of women pilots known as the Ninety-Nines. The recognition ceremony took place May 24 at the Air Canada Flight Operations facility. Click here for the full story at

ninety nines emblemThe Ninety-Nines is the international organization of women pilots that promotes advancement of aviation through education, scholarships, and mutual support while honoring our unique history and sharing our passion for flight.

Established in 1929 by 99 women pilots, the members of The Ninety-Nines, Inc., International Organization of Women Pilots, are represented in all areas of aviation today.

And, to quote Amelia Earhart, the First President, fly “for the fun of it!”.

AC News

Air Canada News

June 13th, 2016 -  Air Canada Rouge began summer seasonal service between Toronto and Glasgow aboard Boeing 767-300ER aircraft. Air Canada last served the Glasgow market in 2005. The Glasgow service will operate until September 25, 2016.

June 14th, 2016 - Toronto-Warsaw launched! summer seasonal service by Air Canada Rouge.

June 16th, 2016 - Air Canada l added Montreal - Lyon to its route network when an Air Canada Boeing 767-300ER.

June 17th, 2016 - launch of daily, year-round 787-9 Dreamliner service non-stop between Toronto and Seoul,

- Air Canada mainline has also started non-stop, year-round 787-8 Vancouver - Brisbane service .

- Launched daily 787 Dreamliner service on its  Vancouver - Newark route.

June 26th, 2016 - resumption of Rouge seasonal service between Toronto – Abbotsford. 

LOTAMS to support Air Canada Rouge 767.

LOT Aircraft Maintenance Services (LOTAMS) has been selected by Air Canada Rouge to provided MRO services on its fleet of 767-300 aircraft. The Poland-headquartered firm said it won the contract thanks to its technical experience on the aircraft type, acquired during co-operations with 767 operators including LOT Polish Airlines, NEOS, TUI Airlines Netherlands, CargoJet, Ukraine International Airlines and UTair.

LOTAMS added it was aided by the fact that it was issued with a Transport Canada Civil Aviation authority certificate in 2010. (source MRO Jun 22/16)

tmb bombardier cs300Air Canada has finalized an order for 45 Bombardier CS300s, plus options for 30 additional aircraft. The letter of intent was previously announced in February. According to Bombardier, deliveries are sheduled to begin in late 2019 and extend to 2022. The firm order is valued at approximately $3.8 billion, which would increase to $6.3 billion if Air Canada exercises all 30 options.

Readers Photos

Reader Submitted Photos

July 23, 2016 marks the 33rd anniversary of the “Gimli Glider” incident in 1983.

tmb flt143Chris Dion was a small child on board flight 143 travelling with his parents, Rick and Pearl Dion. He has saved and framed the boarding passes from the flight and agreed to share the images with our readers. Chris now lives in Surrey, British Columbia.

Did you know that a feature film was made in 1995 based on the incident and that Captain Robert Pearson appears in the film in a cameo role? Click here to view the complete film, ‘Freefall – Flight 174’, on YouTube. Captain Pearson appears at 3:45 as a flight simulator examiner.

Spoiler alert: The film is ‘based’ on the incident and has some inaccuracies. Click here for IMDB trivia on the film.

Najam Jafri, after reading NL # 1342 sent us this memory -

Nice reading the NetLetter bringing up all the memories of Air Canada and Fin # 604 once again. Talking about Gimli Glider someone came to me and asked if I wanted to say goodbye to 604. When I arrived it was leaving the hanger and I joined the crowd present to say goodbye. It was January 24, 2008 and I took my retirement as of February 1, 2008. 

I happened to work on its recovery at YWG in September 1983. I have these photos of 604 taken during repair. You can see the belly of aircraft was ripped apart and we were changing the lower skin.

tmb 604 repair 02Myself working on the belly skin.
tmb 604 repair 03Myself sitting in the engine nacelle.

tmb 604 repair 04Here we have myself, Jean Luc Cruhen sitting in the inlet, Al Capagreco sitting in the chair and I think the person holding cap is Chris McNelly but I am not sure.

tmb 604 repair 05Myself working on the cargo bay; I don't remember the name of the person watching me It was 33 years ago. 
Life of a retired AC employee.

Regards, Najam

Norman Hogwood, in New Zealand, has sent this information and photo - 

tmb fartex reunion 2011FARTEX Reunion - Planned for early October, 2016, probably at the BC Aviation Museum at YYJ. Here we have a photo of the last reunion in September, 2011.

Caz Cazwell is looking for some help identifying members of the crews that took deliveries of the 3 A300 aircraft leased by Wardair in 1988. See NL 1342 for the full story. Click each image to view full size.

tmb 1 wardair yyz 03aug86 5Delivery of C-GIZL - I can only ID Danny McNiven (VP-maint) in the centre & Doug Nicholson to his right.
tmb 2 wardair yyz 17aug86 5Delivery of C-GIZJ – I can only ID Kenny Allan in the centre.
Dtmb 3 wardair yyz 30aug86 5elivery of C-GIZN – I can only ID Kenny Allan on the left & Doug Nicholson second from the right
I knew them all when I took the shots, but now 'grrrr' I can’t.
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to contact Caz
Click here for his aircraft pic gallery or visit his Flickr page

tmb chicago july1 1946The July 1st, 1946 flight 303, DC-3 CF-TEG was the inauguration of service into Chicago from London, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal was a big event in the company's story.

Brian Losito has sent us some photos from the TCA/Air Canada archives. Here we have the arrival in Chicago of the inaugural flight.


TCA/AC People Gallery

TCA/AC People Gallery

1941 - February 14th -

tmb cf tcv posteroptTrans-Canada Air Lines announced completion of an order for six Lockheed Lodestar passenger planes.

The first three, CF-TCT, TCU and TCV were delivered January 7th, 1941, the last three, CF-TCW, TCX and TCY were delivered February 13th, 1941.

Betty Draper has sent us this article from the Regina Leader-Post dated July, 1938.

tmb uniforms 1943Trim new uniforms of navy blue with gold braid stripes and the company insignia are now being worn by pilots of *Trans-Canada Air Force Lines transport planes that land daily at Regina. The uniforms came into use July 1st .

Tunics are single-breasted, of lounge cut to the waist, with gold stripes on the left cuff, two stripes for the first pilot and one for his assistant. On the left breast is worn a gilt badge, the TCA insignia between outspread wings.

The summer uniform calls for a white pique over the navy blue cap, with black shoes, black tie, white shirt and brown gloves completing the uniform. If a raincoat is worn, it must be of navy blue gabardine or cravenette and of Royal navy design. The heavier coat, double breasted, is also blue of naval design.

New uniforms for the ground staff have not yet arrived in Regina. They will consist of white coveralls for the field staff, with the TCA insignia on the back, and white shirts, slacks and white cap. 

(We located this photo from “Between Ourselves” May 1943 of uniforms, Left: Captain Jack Wright, First Officer Vic Wills, Stewardess Jean Beattie and Passenger Agent-in-charge Alan Frome. – eds)

(*Trans-Canada Air Force Lines as it was spelled in the article – eds)

Extracted from the "Between Ourselves" magazine issue dated September, 1967

Courtesy and publicity flights were held in Regina and Saskatoon to introduce the DC-9 to those cities prior to service beginning September 1st., 1967, with four flights held in each city. Company personnel taking part in Regina are shown.

tmb regina dc 9 flightsIn this photo, from the left: Eddie Mann, Regional Supervisor of Commissary Services, Vancouver: Stewardesses A. Stermac, and J. Loest, Winnipeg; Charles Tilbrook, Station Operations Manager, Regina; Captain Bill Storey, P. MacCourt, Flight Service Supervisor and F/O C. Penderson, all of Winnipeg; Jack MacLean, District Sales Manager, Regina; and Stewardess C. Cleven, Winnipeg.

In this photo of the Saskatoon personnel taking part are:

tmb saskatoon dc 9 flightsFrom the left: Glen Steeves, Sales Representative, Saskatoon; Stewardess J. LoestRon Vigars, Station Services Instructor, Montreal; C. Cleven, Winnipeg; Eddie Mann; Miss P. MacCourt; Vern Bower, Station Operations Manager, Saskatoon; Stewardess A. Stermac, Captain Jeff Scott and F/O P. Relton, Montreal; S. Parr, Sales Office Assistant and J. McHale, Office Manager, Saskatoon.

Alan's Space

Alan's Space

Alan RustMotorcycle Backflips Over Airplane In Dangerous Stunt

(Submitted by: Alan Rust )

Watch this stunt team as they pull off a world first - flying an airplane under a back-flipping motorcycle and a tight rope walking act.

stunt flying550x310


CPAir, Canadi>n People Gallery

CPAir/Canadian People Galler

Located in the "Contact" magazine issued October 1997

How to make an old rattletrap look like $300,000.

tmb cpa rattletrapThe first de-icing truck to be "re-manufactured" was being delivered much to an elated Randy Abel (left) system aircraft de-icing specialist who is ready to accept delivery at Vancouver. Some of the GSE mechanics on the project:

From the left: David Oppenlander, Gyanendra Narayan, Robin Wiltshire, Doug Martin (GSE supervisor), Dave Blackwell and Tony Kirsten.

The Canadi>n Check Planners at Vancouver Line 1 are:

tmb cpa bay 1 plannersFrom the left: Aircraft Maintenance Planners Bill Gellert, Dave Bastien; Records Controller, Terry Dukes and Peter Krug, Aircraft Maintenance Planner.

Here we have the bosses of the planner group.

tmb cpa planners bossesFrom the left: Ed Kriese, Aircraft Maintenance Planner; John Pistilli,  Supervisor Resource/Production; Indy Jaswal, Supervisor, Planning and Support and, standing is George Clifton, Manager, Planning and Support.


Wayne's WingsWayne's Wings

wayne albertson articlesThe Route to Hong Kong (with a stopover in Anchorage)

In our last issue I mentioned that the Airbus A340 served the YVR-HKG route for a few years between the B747 and B777 fleets. My first trip to Hong Kong was in September 2007 on an A340 that became the most interesting flight of my life.

My actual destination was the beautiful city of Guilin in China’s Guangxi province but I planned to tour Hong Kong for a couple of days before moving on.

I was given a window seat just behind the wing on the port side of the aircraft with no one sitting beside me. A fellow stock keeper was on the same flight and his sister happened to be the in-charge flight attendant. The flight took off in the early afternoon and I settled in comfortably to enjoy the ride.

At the time, movies were still projected on screens in each cabin with the flight map visible in between the entertainment. About four hours into the flight, as the first movie was ending, I felt the aircraft bank sharply but I did not think anything of it.

After the movie credits the flight map appeared on the screen and clearly showed that the aircraft had reversed course and was headed for Anchorage, Alaska. The captain came on p.a. almost immediately and explained that they had to shut down the No. 4 engine and that we would be shortly landing in Anchorage. The adventure had begun.

I watched the fuel jettison out through tubes in the wings as the aircraft descended. Still, the aircraft hit the runway very hard. When we arrived at the gate (around 18:00) we were advised that we would not be permitted off the plane but, optimistically, the repair should not take very long. The problem was a fuel pump seal and United Airlines was our maintenance provider and they were contacting an AME (Aircraft Maintenance Engineer) to change the seal.

Apparently, this was not an easy task. Hours passed as we waited for the AME to be found. It was now 22:00 and we were advised that UAL had not been successful in finding their AME and that we would finally be permitted to leave the aircraft and be shuttled to hotels for the night.

Customs was chaos and it was midnight before we were boarded on buses and driven to downtown hotels. Check in was delayed because UAL had not faxed confirmation that they would be paying for the rooms so we had to use our own credits cards as guarantees. This was sorted out by morning and we were given breakfast vouchers to a nearby restaurant.

We were back on the bus at 09:00 to board the aircraft by 10:00. Apparently UAL found their AME and the seal had been replaced. However, when we were again settled into our seats it was announced that FAA rules stipulated that a second maintenance signature was required to allow the aircraft to depart. Once again, UAL was having trouble finding a qualified person. Again, hours passed as we sat awaiting any positive announcements but none came. At around 16:00 the captain announced that arrangements were being made to fly an Air Canada AMR up from Vancouver and it would be several more hours.

For the most part all the passengers sat quietly but tempers did flare a couple of times and the cabin crew did there best to remain but they were as trapped as we were and the concern was also visible on their faces. All I had to read during the hours that passed was a Mandarin phrase book; you’d think that I would have become fluent during this time. tmb guilin2007

The captain came on the p.a. again around 17:00 to give us an update but he was interrupted shortly after he began speaking. He came back on a few minutes later with great news; UAL had found a second AME and he was on his way to the airport.

Finally, we were pushed back from the gate a full 24 hours after landing and continued on the Hong Kong. I had one day to tour Hong Kong before flying to Guilin where I had a wonderful time touring one of the most beautiful places on earth. I have returned to Hong Kong several times since then but this will always be my most memorable trip. Pictured at right is myself in front of Elephant Trunk Hill in Guilin. 

Were any of our readers on or involved with this flight? Possibly members of the flight or cabin crews?

Reader's Feedback

Reader's Feedback

Bernie McCormack has sent us this memory which he calls "Hi speed to YYJ" -

The West coast route, YVR-YYJ-SEA, was known to those flying it as the Coast Run. It was quite unique in that on the days it was a crew's paring you could fly all day in the same weather be it beautiful, stormy or foggy and on a few days over the three or four years I flew it, we flew in out and through some pretty severe systems including a hurricane one night. We often were on maximum duty days and yet the flight legs were so short we had to do it often to acquire our pay hours. In the dark months of  winter it was dawn till dusk. There were no duty rigs that were later designed to remedy the situation. The crews had a unique bonding that led to a few "coast parties" at one of our homes in Vancouver and many stories and anecdotes that focussed on the weather, visibility just short of the Pat Bay airport (cloak hill!) and fast crossings Victoria to Vancouver.

One day in 1956 when I was flying with Pat Leslie he told me he was going to do a fairly high speed (DC-3?) trip to Vancouver from Pat Bay. Pat was a racer at heart,  we used to call him Ben Hur. He had raced sail boats/yachts successfully and now decided to break a record. I don't think any were ever recorded but it was all part of the folklore. After a fast crossing I requested and received clearance from VR tower for a close in left base to runway 25 and we turned in on final at about 600 feet, wheels down, flaps (just now) down and speed down as we crossed over the button and touched down quite smoothly right there, applied brakes immediately and turned left at the first intersection to the terminal building ramp. Probably 10 or more minutes under schedule which was listed as about 35 or 40 minutes.

Jump ahead now to the early '72 when I was captaining a DC-9 out of Winnipeg and was in flight dispatch in Vancouver. I was amongst old friends with whom I had started in my early days, Al Tooke, Denny Brandon and others. One of them suggested that because this was one of the first DC-9 flights to Victoria I was about to fly and because "you know the route so well you will probably break the speed record". I can remember saying I don't want to get involved with that thought, it is not a good idea. However the seed was planted. When we taxied away from the terminal building The First Officer asked me "the wind is favouring runway 12 (120 degrees M) do you want me to request 12 for takeoff?" -- OK. Short taxi to the runway, no traffic, "Air Canada cleared for takeoff".

We became airborne and requested a turn direct to Victoria. we turned about 60 degrees to the right, began crossing the Strait of Georgia in the climb at about  170K + (nautical miles per hour) and in no time it seems we were rapidly passing by Active Pass (also the marine ferry route) between Maine and Saturna Islands to Victoria, at cruise altitude and 350K. There was no 250K below 10,000 feet restriction in those days. Victoria terminal was surprised that we were entering their area so soon and cleared us for a visual approach to runway 27. We delayed the descent for a little longer than we normally would have in order to gain the speed benefit and then, "NOW", action time.

Smooth but swift reduction of engine power to idle (normal), speed brakes out, maintain altitude until the speed decayed to 300K, undercarriage (Wheels) down, a little longer and as speed dropped to 280K speed brakes retract, start the flaps down and now start the descent, promptly! We soon were approaching James Island, 90 degrees to the left of and just over 4 miles to the runway "In range check". We lower more flap, increase our rate of descent which was fairly steep, turn in on final approach to the runway, change over to tower frequency and they ask "are you planning to land?".--"Affirmative."

Roger you're cleared to land gear down (normal formality). Speed is where it should be, We're just about down to the glide path, cross the approach light towers in the apch/slot, good smooth landing, whew! we're here. We braked, reverse thrust, slow to taxi speed and turn clear of the runway. The cockpit door opened and the flight attendant asked "do you want the seat belt light on"!!! I have an opinion to voice here," do not be drawn into an aircraft speed contest unless it is in your own aircraft and you are the only one on board". How fast was the crossing air time? I don't know, I believe about 11 or 12 minutes.

Lesson learned! Bernie McCormack

After reading the comments by 'dblaflyer' regarding uniforms in NL # 1345Karen Skinner shares this memory -

I read happily the comments by one of the flt. attendants concerning those tri-colored uniforms introduced in 1969. She was absolutely correct & I remember all of the flight attendants in the picture with the exception of one. I remember Carla Denike who married Gord Paler (pilot) & Gail Wallace later, Gail Barton (deceased) Lise Mollevang. These people were Winnipeg based. Re the name tags...later introduced they eventually had colored portions depicting which base they were assigned. It sure was nice to see that old picture again. Good memories re those old sponge type uniforms...if  anyone spilled liquid on them ...they sucked it up like a sponge!

In NL # 1343, we had this photo asking for help in identities.

tmb evelyn desjardinsBrian has advised us that the left hand person was Jeff Reynolds, Purchasing & Supply, Dorval. 

(Anyone else help out here - eds)

Odds and Ends

Odds and Ends

tmb new image for aircraftA new image for an aircraft found on the internet.


Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips

Terry Baker

Interline offerings by KVI Travel, Kelowna, B.C., Canada
18 years of Travel Experience, 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit


  • Azamara Journey (5*+) - 13 nightstmb kvi travel emblem
    Hong Kong | At Sea | Halong Bay 2 days | Da Nang | At Sea | Ho Chi Minh City | At Sea |Klong Toey 3 days | Ko Samui | At Sea | Singapore
    Dec 10 - Inside $2249, Outside $2509, Balcony $3749
    Jan 6 - Inside $2479, Outside $2849, Balcony $3749

  • Azamara Journey (5*+) - 14 nights
    Singapore | At Sea | Krakatoa | Semarang 2 days | At Sea | Lombok, Indonesia | Komodo | Benoa 2 days | Celukan Bawang | At Sea 2 days | Singapore 2 days
    Dec 23 - Inside $3079, Outside $3449, Balcony $4049

  • Holland America Volendam (5*) - 14 nights
    Vancouver | At Sea | Ketchikan | Juneau | Glacier Bay | At Sea 2 days | Dutch Harbor | At Sea | Cross International Dateline | At Sea 2 days | Kushiro | At Sea | Yokohama
    Sep 28 - Inside $1099, Outside $1399, Suite $3099

  • Azamara Journey (5*+) - 7 nights
    Civitavecchia | Sorrento | Giardini Naxos | Valletta | Siracusa | Katakolon | Nafplio | Piraeus
    Aug 22 - Inside $980, Outside $1190, Balcony $1470

  • Azamara Journey (5*+) - 7 nights
    Civitavecchia | Sorrento 2 days | Giardini Naxos | Valletta | Porto Empedocle | At Sea |Civitavecchia
    Sep 23 - Inside $2029, Outside $2249, Balcony $2889
    Sep 30 - Inside $1949, Outside $2179, Balcony $2479

  • Azamara Journey (5*+) - 17 nights
    Civitavecchia | Sorrento | Giardini Naxos | At Sea | Chania | Suez Canal (Passage) 2 days |Aqaba 2 days | At Sea 4 days | Salalah | At Sea | Muscat | Dubai 2 days
    Oct 7 - Inside $2699, Outside $2849, Balcony $3739

Prices are USD$

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tmb cartoonOur cartoon found on the internet!

Terry Baker, Alan Rust, Wayne Albertson

Terry Baker | Alan Rust | Wayne Albertson
NetLetter Staff for 2016
(you can read our bios at

E&OE - (errors and omissions excepted) - The historical information as well as any other information provided in the "NetLetter" is subject to correction and may have changed over time. We do publish corrections (and correct the original article) when this is brought to our attention.

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