The NetLetter
 For Air Canada Retirees

July 10, 2010 - Issue 1128
5426 Subscribers
First published in October, 1995
  • Chief Pilot - Vesta Stevenson, Victoria, B.C.
  • Co-pilot - Terry Baker, Nanaimo, B.C.
  • Flight Engineer - Alan Rust, Surrey, B.C.
  • Ground Technician - Bill Rowsell, Londesboro, Ontario
To contact us, send an email to

In This Issue
Women in Aviation
Star Alliance News
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery
Alan's Space
Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc
Reader's Feedback
Odds & Ends
Terry's Trivia
About us
Terry, Vesta & Alan Pionair's AGM 2007

Terry, Vesta & Alan
The NetLetter Web Site
The NetLetter Web Site

ACFamily Network
ACFamily Links
Air Canada Pionairs

Project North Star

ACFamily Obituaries
Vesta Stevenson
Vesta Stevenson

We welcome you to allow the NetLetter to be your platform, and opportunity, to relive your history while working for either TCA, AC, CPAir, CAIL, PWA, AirBC etal. and share your experiences with us!

The NetLetter is an email newsletter published every weekend and contains a mixture of nostalgia, current news and travel tips. We encourage our readers to submit their stories, photos and/or comments from either days gone by or from present day experiences and  trips. If we think that the rest of our readers will enjoy it, we will publish it here

We also welcome your feedback in regard to anything we post here. Many readers have commented with additional information names and personal memories from the photos and articles presented here.
The NetLetter, which is free, is open to anyone that wishes to subscribe but is targeted to retired employees from Air Canada, Canadian Airlines and all the other companies that were part of what Air Canada is today. Thanks for joining us!

Vesta & your NetLetter Team
Women in Aviation - Compiled by Terry Baker
What's the best birthday gift for a 102-year-old? Whatever she wants... and Myrtle Carroll wanted to go for a ride in one of the little airplanes she enjoys listening to from the porch of her home near the Platte Valley Airport and Vintage Aero Flying Museum in Fort Lupton, Colo.
Carroll had only been flying once before in her life, and never in a small airplane. But she loves the sound of the engines buzzing nearby, and when a friend asked if she'd like a ride for her birthday, she said, "Well, yes, I would." 
Mark Holliday, the museum's chief pilot, who is also the husband of Carroll's caretaker at the assisted-living home, Marilyn Taylor, took her for a spin in the back seat of a Cessna 182. "When you're 102, if you want to fly, you should be able to fly," Taylor told the Greeley Tribune.

While Myrtle (above) wanted to fly, the lady below... not so much. Or maybe, a bit too much.

Woman tries to leave Aircraft in mid-flight
Shocked passengers helped crew restrain a woman who allegedly tried to wrench open the door of a WestJet commercial aircraft in Canada on a flight from Calgary to Halifax with 131 passengers aboard.
The flight made an emergency landing in Winnipeg. Canadian radio reports have quoted police as saying the woman made "some verbal indication" that she wanted to depart the plane. The woman allegedly assaulted a crew member and a 77-year-old passenger, who suffered minor injuries.
The plane was about one hour into the flight when the incident occurred.
Barbara Loretta Morton, 47 from Newfoundland, was arrested in Winnipeg and faces two counts of mischief assault, endangering safety of aircraft and failing to comply with instructions of flight crew. There may be further charges.
It's the latest of several widely-publicised incidents in which passengers, often affected by alcohol or mental disturbance, attempt to open doors in flight. Fortunately for air safety, doors are locked and "armed" during flight and can be opened only when authorised from the cockpit.
Star Alliance News - Compiled by Terry Baker
Star Alliance
Star Alliance
Aegean Airlines joins Star Alliance network, connecting Greece to the world; improved access to Greek vacation hotspots. At a ceremony held in Athens today, Aegean Airlines was accepted into the Star Alliance network as the 28th member. Aegean Airlines' joining Star Alliance comes into effect just as Air Canada, a founding member of Star Alliance, earlier this month launched non-stop flights from both Toronto and Montreal to Athens for the summer season.
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery - Compiled by Terry Baker
TCA/Air Canada LogoMusings from the "Between Ourselves" magazine an Air Canada publication from years gone by.
Issue dated - February 1999
Gleanings from the "Horizons" magazine
Class of "98"
Newly hired pilots -Before pilots are recruited by Air Canada, they must have 2,000-6,000 flying hours under their belt. Once they come on-board, they undergo a rigorous three-month training course that includes learning about the operational side of the business, such as firefighting techniques, crew resource management, and the responsibilities of Flight Attendants. Then, its on to ground school for simulator training and line indoctrination and finally, graduation.
Congratulations to the class of '98!
Pictured in the front row (I to r], all from Toronto: Bruce Foster, DC-9 First Officer: Mike Walsh, DC-9 First Officer; Theresa Niers, B-767 Relief Pilot; Duff Kaufman, CRJ First Officer; Bastian Visser, CRJ First Officer.
Back row (I to r): Dwayne Neilson, CRJ First Officer, Toronto; Michael Brewin, DC-9 First Officer, Toronto; Mark Stow, B-767 Relief Pilot, Toronto; Martin Tamme, CRJ First Officer, Montreal; Stephane Ratthe, CRJ First Officer, Montreal; A.Y. Krawchuk, DC-9 Fret Officer, Toronto; Geoff Wall, DC-9 First Officer, Toronto; Dan Comeau, CRJ First Officer, Montreal and Chris Sponder, CRJ First Officer, Toronto.
New Delhi Staff
Here is a photo of the staff in New Delhi who acquired new skills in techniques in building rapport with customers. Last July they learned about internal and external customers. The aim was for a positive memorable experience for customers.
In the front row (l to r): David Johnson, Srijeeta Verma, Amrita Sihona, Snilpa Sharma, and Naseer Khwaja. Behind them (I to r): Julie Hutchinson, Customer Sales and Service Training Coordinator, Europe and Asia, Ignatious Thomas, Geoffrey Beckett, General Manager India, Manish Dhiman, Han Narayan, Jyotsna Misra, Althea Mackroat, and Frank Shettlesworth, Customer Service Training and Development Manager, Europe and Asia.
(Since his retirement, Frank Shettlesworth has his own business and provides help for visitors to Thailand and can be reached at  or email
Christmas at 39,000 ft
On December 24 1998, despite being away from family
for the yuletide holiday, the crew of AC864 found a way to enjoy Christmas dinner. Once most of the London-bound passengers were asleep, the In-Flight crew dug into a turkey and all the trimmings brought from home.

Pictured, starting at the bottom left, are: Flight Attendants Anik lwanowsky, Claude St. Jean, Pierre Bellerose, Julie Maude Guilbert, Capt. John Morehouse, Guillaume Leduc, Claude Michel Daigle, Mike Robertson [standing) Kim Holmes, Suzanne Lapointe Gaudet, Roger Gaudet, Cigal Gabbay.
First Officer Pete Wadell is missing from the photo-- someone had to fly the plane.
(Christmas must have been a day off for the auto-pilot - eds)
Alan's Space - by Alan Rust
Alan Rust
Alan's Space
Eastern Airlines DC-7B Flies again!
The first aircraft in the collection of the Historical Flight Foundation is a DC-7B (N836D) serial number 45345/928, originally delivered to Eastern Airlines in January 1958.  Operated by EAL and several flying clubs for less than 10 years before being parked at the St. Paul, MN airport.
The airplane was made ready to ferry during May-August of 2004. With an overnight stop in Atlanta, it arrived in Miami to begin the restoration process. The original interior and hat racks were removed, and placed into long-term storage. They will be available for re-installation come the day the airplane is put on permanent static display. Over 65% of the original aluminum skin, outer wing panels, engines, have been repaired or replaced. A full paint scheme and new interior was completed for the first official Open House in December, of 2008. The airplane has now (March 22, 2010) received the necessary FAA exemption to begin carrying passengers for compensation. This is a wonderful program initiated by the FAA to allow historically significant aircraft to raise funds for its own preservation.
For more details and photos see: 
For video of first flight (after restoration) click on the image below.  

DC-7B Restoration flight
DC-7B Restoration flight

Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc. People & Events
- Compiled by Terry Baker
CAIL TailsNews and articles from days gone by gleaned from various publications from C.A.I.L. and it's "ancestry" of contributing airlines.
Issue dated - January 1999
Extracts from the "Canadi>n Flyer" magazine
Canadair 4
Fifty years ago, Canadian Pacific Air Lines commenced flying services to the Orient utilizing Canadair Four aircraft. The cities were Tokyo, Hong Kong from Vancouver with refueling stops at Anchorage, Alaska; Sheyma in the Aleutians.

YVR-Tokyo fare ca$1,287 return. YVR-HKG ca$1437.50 return and Tokyo - HKG ca$310.85 return. No mention of taxes here!
Here we have a Canadair 4, on take off from the Canadair plant in Montreal and was one such aircraft used on the Orient routes.
Gerhardt & son
Gerhardt Seifert of the Machine Shop YVR is happy to have his son Erik as an apprentice
Prince Rupert farewell
Farewell from Prince Rupert
Old friendships were rekindled and new friends were made at the base closure/turnover party in Prince Rupert on Oct. 3. Ex-Ruperites flew or drove from such distant points as Terrace, Prince George, Calgary, Vancouver, Edmonton, Thunder Bay, Regina and even Beijing.

From left to right: Gerry Yee, YYC;  John Zerbin, YYC, Bill Werbowski, YYC;  Lois Chappell, YPR; Norma McCracken (formerly Procter), YQT;  Barb Kowal, YEG;  Janice Gee, YEG;  Arlene McCleod, YPR.
Back row, right side: Al Wood, YXS Fran Colussi, YPR, Barb Drzewiecki, YEG
Prince Rupert farewell
Standing (top left to right): Frank van Gisbergen, Denise Carignan, Lynne Finnigan, John Dunlop, Dan Fallwell, Carol Fregin, Ann Jackson.
Sitting (left to right): Arnold Thomson, Annette Youngman, Don Wagner, Shaw McNish, Wendy Prystay, Susan Eby.
Bottom row, sitting (left to right): Shannon Legovini, Shauna Fox, Edda Wagner

Issue dated -February 1999
Proud Wings Logo
With the arrival of flight CP30 at Vancouver from Beijing on January 13th presented the new "Proud Wings" logo.
The launching of the new brand, which included uniforms, cabin interiors and R & D cost ca$38.5 million
Proud WIngs Crew
And here is the crew - (shall they for ever remain anonymous? -eds)

Under the banner "Destination: Harbin, China" appeared this story;
Considering the number of international flights we operate on a daily basis, the notable diversions to alternate airports are few and far between. When they do occur, these diversions often become a real adventure.

On Nov. 20. CP29 from Vancouver to Beijing was one such unforeseen adventure. Winter weather forced CP29, a B767, to make an unscheduled and lengthy stop in Harbin. some 600 miles northeast of Beijing.

The diversion was prompted by a severe storm in Beijing. Rather than employing conventional snowplows and sweepers. Beijing Airport relies on 500 soldiers equipped with shovels and brooms to keep its runway clear. But on Nov. 22 (CP 29 crosses the international dateline), the snow piled up faster than the soldiers could shovel and sweep.
Unsheduled landing in Harbin
We were about ten hours into an eleven and-a-half hour flight when we were advised by Harbin Air Traffic Control that Beijing Airport was closed and that we had to land at Harbin, recalled Captain Bill Driscoll..
Here is a photo of the crew, which included this in-flight crew: Karl Maier, Irene Barrett, Mariette Pellot, Lynda Spikerman, Manja Torget, Clint Dolphin and Sherry Wang. On the flight deck with Captain Bill Driscoll were Doug Stanley and Jim Richardson. 

Reader's Feedback - Compiled by Terry Baker
Reader's Feedback
Every week we ask our readers for their stories or  feedback on what they have read here in previous issues. Below is the feedback we have received recently. 
Kalula Livery
Bill Sim sends us this interesting web site -
Kulula is a low-cost South-African airline that doesn't take itself too seriously. Check out their new livery!

Murray (Murph) Allen sent us this story -
I worked as a station attendant for Trans-Canada Air Lines from 1956 until 1964. My nephew, Dan Steeves, a retiree from Air Canada, was good enough to sign me up as a subscriber to the newsletter, which I have enjoyed very much.
In your June 12th edition (NetLetter nr 1124) I saw a photo of Capt. John Wild, who regularly flew DC3's in and out of Fredericton. Seeing his picture took me back some 50 years when Capt. Wild landed his aircraft while I was on duty. He radioed in after landing that he was having a problem with the left engine and he wanted to have a look at the engine  just as soon as he brought the plane to a stop on the ramp in front of the terminal.
We were equipped with a worn out tractor with a cargoveyer attached which had been passed down to Fredericton from Montreal. The clutch was very touchy. When the aircraft came to a stop, Capt Wild , while hanging out the cargo door at the front of the plane, was shouting "get that thing up here so I can inspect the engine while it is still hot!" I was a bit nervous as I maneuvered the old thing into place and before I could make sure I was in the correct position, Capt. Wild shouted once again, "Get that thing up here!" Naturally, since he was the boss, I raised the conveyor. I was too close.
The end of the conveyor caught and pulled down the antenna wires. Capy. Wild, in a much calmer voice, said "there is no hurry now. I expect we will be here for awhile", and he was right, a couple of days if I recall correctly. I appreciated Capt. Wild when he explained to the station manager, Wilson Himmelman, that he (Wild) was fully responsible for the accident and that no blame should be attached to me.
I didn't care a lot for Capt. Wild prior to that day, but I sure appreciated him as a gentleman following the incident. There was no letter put in my file. I thought you might find this interesting.  
Murray (Murph ) Allen

From the July edition of the monthly UK Pionairs newsletter -
Anniversary of the " Cabbage Patch Incident"  - 6th November 1963
Colin Grant sent this memory -

Further to your tales of the DC8  running into the cabbages that evening, I was in the Peggy Bedford pub (now long gone) although at that time I lived a long way from the airport, and it would be another ten years before I came to work for Air Canada.  I bet I'm the only Pionair to have heard it!  At first we thought it was the weather and thunder and the window frames shook in the bar, but as this was soon followed by the sound of police and fire brigade's sirens, of course we just had to go and have a look.
I remember the crew coming up a farm track on to the Colnbrook Road, just a lane in those days, and a stewardess saying that everyone was OK. The small alloy plaque you mention hung on the wall of the Aircraft maintenance office on the Mike stands in later years. I think it has the regimental badge of the Royal Engineers mounted on it.  I often asked about the incident, but was always told, when telling my account of things, that it was a freighter, no passengers, and no stewardesses! Maybe I was wrong on that wet misty night?  That was until I read Archie's account of the events in one of the newsletters.  I should have asked him, but we always talked about the motor bikes we had owned - still that was also very interesting.

Thanks to Colin Grant for his contribution.
Odds & Ends - Compiled by Terry Baker
Odds & EndsEamonn Horan in Ireland sent us this information -.
Ryanair is planning to run flights where passengers stand during the journey at a cost of just €5 per ticket.

Michael O'Leary, the airline's chief executive, set out proposals that also include charging customers to use the loo. A standing area with "vertical seats" will be introduced at the back of its fleet of 250 planes.

He said that charging customers €1 to make use of facilities would encourage travelers on one hour flights to use lavatories at the airport instead of on the aircraft.

The Irishman said he intended to introduce coin-operated loos and added: "The other change we've been looking at is taking out the last 10 rows of seats so we will have 15 rows of seats and the equivalent of 10 rows of standing area."

A Ryanair spokesman said that Boeing had been consulted over refitting the fleet with "vertical seats" which would allow passengers to be strapped in while standing up, which would cost between €5 and €10 per person.

Safety testing will be carried out next year.
However, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Authority said the plans would struggle to meet safety requirements. He said: "It's aviation law that people have to have a seat-belt on from take-off and landing so they would have to be in a seat. I don't know how Mr O'Leary would get around that one. During turbulence passengers also have to have a seat-belt on." (Source Irish )

Luxury Flying Limos
Brian Dunn ( sent us this photo taken by Dave Brook.

An array of  "luxury Limos" parked at YYZ and used by the recent G8/G20 heads of state.

Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips - by Terry Baker
Terry Baker
Terry Baker
All departures and connections at Toronto Pearson International Airport's Terminal 1 are now under one roof. A new wing in the transborder area accommodates all our short-haul U.S. flights, making connections quicker and more convenient - bus transfers are no longer required.
Deals offered by Interline Allstars
HAL Amsterdam 69 Nights
At first glance a cruise from Seattle on 24 Sep 10 to San Diego might seem a bit expensive at $5199, but when you took at all of the places in between you will know what I mean when I say it is a steal! Cruise through Asia, along the east coast of Australia and work your way home via the South Pacific,
HAL Votendam 42 Nights
Departing on 23 Sep 10 from Seattle you can spend 42 nights cruising through the South Pacific Islands and focus even more time in New Zealand enroute to Sydney. The bonus is that for $3799 you can get an upgrade to an obstructed view cabin which gives you light, a tub and easy access to strolling on deck for your 42 night vacation.
European cruises: Baltic from us$486, East or West Med from us$299
Caribbean cruises: east from us$414, West from us$429, South from us$379

Don't hesitate to call Gordon Froese for more information at (800) 432-9075
Direct Email to Gordon 
Continuing the story of our recent cruise started in NetLetter nr 1127 -
West Coast cruise May 8th to 15th 2010. LAX to YVR
Tuesday May 11th.
A sea day, they call this, when no ports of call are scheduled. We had a very rough night, with heavy swells some a high as 36 foot on occasion giving lots of motion on board. The pool was covered by a net, due to the swells which caused the water in the pool to slop backwards and forwards causing quite a miniature tsunami and spilling over the sides. The sound made you feel like being at a beach with the surf running.
The ships log indicated the wind as Southerly and Fresh Breeze. The sea was listed as "Rough".
We decided to watch the movie being shown in the theatre - Sherlock Holmes - which we endured for 30 minutes before walking out as we considered it quite a load of rubbish, certainly not our idea of the life and times of Sherlock Holmes. So we went back to our books.

Wednesday May 12th
Today our port was Astoria, and we are due for a city tour. Our yellow school bus awaited us after breakfast. Many years since we have been in a school bus. On the quayside there was a group of local artisans and a 4 piece combo to welcome the passengers. We toured around the city and saw another selection of Victorian houses with their different styles and colour schemes.. We visited the Maritime museum. This, we found, to be extremely interesting, as it gave the history of the events over the past years. Astoria is at the mouth of the Columbia river and the turmoil when the waters from the Columbia collide with those of the Pacific during a low pressure storm are quite horrendous and, at times, the waves reached 50 foot. Over the past years, many ships were wrecked on the rocks or swamped and many lives lost. There were many stories of heroism by the life guard members and the general public. In modern times, the ships have a pilot to guide them "over the bar", as it is called. There was a movie in the museum showing how difficult it is, at times, for the pilots to get on and off the vessel.
Our next stop was to a monument in a state park. Painted around the monument was depictions of the past history, and a great view over the city. We also noticed a parking sign for invalids which read "Annual Parking Fee $1.00 ". This has got to be the best bargain going.

We headed back to the ship though another part of the city, and the guide told us about how rough the past was, and the prostitution problem was such that the locals referred to them as "female boarding houses".
We noticed the price of gas was us$3.13 a gallon. We spent yet another lazy day on board after our return.
(More next time - eds)
We hope you have enjoyed this issue of the NetLetter, see you next week!

Your NetLetter Team