The NetLetter

For Air Canada Retirees
(Part of the ACFamily Network)


Sept 1, 2012 - Issue 1219
First Issue published in October 1995!
(over 5,400 subscribers)
In This Issue
Our First 75 Years
Reader Submitted...Photos
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery
Alan's Space
Canadi>n/CP Air/PWA, Wardair, etc
Reader's Feedback
Terry's Trivia
NetLetter Past Issues

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Terry Baker
Welcome to the NetLetter!

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, Wardair, et al and share your experiences with us!

Terry Baker and the NetLetter Team
Our First 75 Years - Compiled by Terry Baker
1951 - April 16th - TCA adopted a shorter working week - 40 hours.
1961 - April 30th - Last passenger revenue flight with North Star equipment Sydney-Halifax-Montreal.
June 30th - Last North Star freighter service departed YVR-YYC-YWG-YYZ arrived in YUL on July 1st.
July 1st - New Viscount service Halifax-Saint John - Yarmouth - Boston - New York.
July - 16th North Stars sold.
Reader Submitted Photos - Compiled by Terry Baker

Readers PhotosReader Submitted Photos -  The photos and information below have been submitted to us by our faithful readers.  


Image Blank 200px From the family of Martin Betts, we have this photo but no location or identifications. We hope our readers can help out here.
Image Blank 200px This is another photo from the Martin Betts family, but this time we have identification- surnames and station but no location or year. Back row left to right: Blower (XV), Cooper (CG), Dempsey (HAT), Corsiglia (CV), Paillefer (QG), McLarty (VC), Roberts (OW), Robinson (YZ), Smith (QT), Mellon (NY). Front Row left to right: Deyman (CCR), Stepells (YZTR, Denman (YZTR), Craven (YZTR), Campbell (?), Mickler (YZTR), Betts (YZTR), MacFarland (YZTR).

Image Blank 200px Ed Hill has sent along some photos. Here are two of the stag for Capt. Bing Davis held at the Dorval Royal Canadian Legion around 1953/4.
Image Blank 200px

Image Blank 200px This photo is of the Maintenance and Engineering office bowling team 1948/9.
Unfortunately we have no identifications.

Image Blank 200px This is an aereal photo of present day Winnipeg airport sent in by Laurie Pitcher.
TCA/Air Canada People Gallery - Compiled by Terry Baker
TCA/Air Canada  LogoBelow we have musings from the "Between Ourselves" and "Horizons" magazine, Air Canada publications from years gone by, as well as various in-house publications.

The NetLetter has been fortunate enough to have our readers donate vintage Trans-Canada Air Lines and Air Canada publications from as far back as 1941 to share with you. These have been scanned and are being prepared for presenting in a special area of the ACFamily Network for archival and genealogy research.
Image Blank 200px
Jim Bruce has sent us these photos and information - On the subject of derelicts: a 1968 photo of TCA North Star CF-TFP # 216 (1948-1955); after World Wide Airways was done with her, she was cannibalized at Dorval and the fuselage ended up being the clubhouse for the Galaxie Flying Club, near Rawdon QC. In the foreground are my children, Norman and Lynda, who both have families of their own now as do my other 2 children, David and Susan.
Image Blank 200px
The other 2 North Star photos are of the last flight of an N.S. freighter, June 29-30, 1961; the signatures are all the people who serviced the a/c during the transcontinental Montreal-Vancouver-Montreal flight. I took these shots in YUL at the TCA Base. The last ever TCA North Star flight was August 30, Image Blank 200px 1961, a passenger flight with my old friend Maurice Labine as Captain (Sydney NS-Montreal). Jim

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To go along with the information from Jim, we found this from the "Between Ourselves" issued July 1961. THE LAST SCHEDULED NORTH STAR Trans-Continental Flying Merchant touched down in Montreal at 1700 hours on July 1st. Having departed YVR-YYC-YWG-YYZ on June 30th. Names of those employees that serviced the aircraft between Montreal and Vancouver and return are shown on the nose of the aircraft. Captain Dan Ott signs his name as he finished the last flight. Standing beside him is First Officer R. D. Johnson who also made the final leg.

  Image Blank 200px
15 North Stars have been sold to Overseas Aviation Limited in the U.K. and one sold to International Air Freighters of Edmonton, Alberta. THE CREW OF THE LAST passenger-carrying North Star are shown above at Sydney before bringing Flight 7751 back to Montreal on April 30. There were no passengers aboard however, and Flight 7751 was the turnaround of Flight 762 of April 29, which operated Montreal-Halifax-Sydney and carried 52 passengers - the last revenue passenger load to travel on a TCA North Star. From the left are Captain M. Labine, Stewardesses Judy Turnbull and Joan Teron and First Officer K. Charabin.

Issue dated - December 1943
Found in the "Between Ourselves" magazine -
Image Blank 200px These are eight of the hangar stalwarts who guide the Lockheeds in and out of the northern latitudes. This is a remarkable photograph of a group of eight taken in Edmonton. From left to right: Alf Harris, Janitor; Frank Meakin, Learner; "Red" Stone, Learner; Angel Kube, Chauffeur; Wilf Fair, Crew Chief; Earl Gerow, Crew Chief; Bill Wilkins, Junior Mechanic; and Sid Willis, Crew Chief.

These are some of the airport staff who keep the main artery of fast Trans-Canadian transportation pumping into the British Empire's northernmost city. No matter what comes after the war, they'll never again be impressed by mere numbers of aircraft. In Edmonton they've seen everything. From left to right: Vic Martinson, Radio Operator; Bob Reynolds, Radio Operator; Rita Bourque, Passenger Agent; Maida Kneeshaw, Radio Operator; Marg Chalmers, Agent-in-Charge; Ada Bradley, Passenger Agent; and Tommy Cunningham, Station Manager.

Issue dated January 1944:

Moncton organized the T.C.A.R.A. on November 19th, 1943. Officers elected were T. A. McMahon, President; G. L. Barbour, Vice President; S. D. Leonard, Treasurer; and W. F. Weldon, Secretary.

Issue dated - March 1944
Image Blank 200px A three day session February 7 - 9th at the Marquis Hotel was a gathering of Supervisory Passenger Agents from the Western region. Standing, left to right: Al Lewis, Mr. O. H. MacLaren, Orv Knight, Dick Sellors, Jack McLellan, Tom Moore, Al Frome and Ed Hill. Seated, left to right: John Eastveld, Marg Major, Hazel Little, Margo Chalmers, Lou Hickey, Mrs. Barrett, Jean Beattie and Tom Kirkham.
Issue dated May 1944
Halifax organized a T.C.A.R.A during May 1944. Temporary officers were Stew Sime, Rob Gifford, Claire Houlton and Alf Devonish.

Issue dated Midsummer 1944
Vancouver organized the T.C.A.R.A. on June 12th 1944.

Issue dated September 1944
The Lethbridge unit of the Trans-Canada Air Lines Recreational Association (T.C.A.R.A.) is just getting under way. The plan, as in all cases, is to get everyone together as one big happy family.
The Executive chosen include: John Robulak, President; Allan Lewis, V.P.; Alice Groves, Treasurer; Jean Nelson, Secretary. The Executive Council is Stan Clarke, John Deak, Orv Knight, Bob Culhill, Betty Pelletier, Jack Simpson, and Doug Hilton. With such a live-wire group at the controls, we feel that we shall have a fine organization on our hands.

Alan's Space - by Alan Rust
Alan's SpaceAlan is still on vacation!
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 its "ancestry" of contributing airlines.
Ron Rhodes has sent us this:
It is, in my opinion, an amazing film for commercial aviation history fans like me. The film, by the National Film Board and hosted by Fred Davis, is about 15 minutes and follows a flight from Vancouver to Tokyo on Canadi>n Pacific "Empress of Tokyo" flight in 1953.
Some of the crew members interviewed are Capt. Bob McKinniss (?), Navigator Ray Taylor and stewardesses Delores Cope and Connie Spiers.

Issue dated - December 1981
Extracted from the "CP Air News" magazine -
Image Blank 200px C4 is the cargo department's equivalent to the Pegasus system. In December, a test course was held, led by Larry Barrett, prior to the two week training course due to commence on February 22nd, 1982 in Vancouver.

Personnel from a cross-section of company departments that will be Impacted by C4 were selected for the test course. From left, Jim Thompson, services training instructor Vancouver; Len Neilsen, services training Instructor, Toronto; Linda Neilson, cargo agent. Toronto; Roger Cotter, supervisor, cargo service development, Vancouver; Derek Hunt, training supervisor, Vancouver cargo; Mike Richards, services training instructor, Vancouver; Walter Howson supervisor, cargo automation, Vancouver. (Larry is in there somewhere - eds)

Image Blank 200px This photo is of the very first airmail arriving at Dauphin, Manitoba from Flin Flon in 1947. In a previous CP Air News, the organization of the CP Air stamp club was announced. This was a letter they received:

It was with great interest that I read your article about the organization of a CP Air stamp club, for I had the first day airmail letter sent to W. E. Nordick, Flin Flon Man. It was sent by Grant Williams and is now in the Western Canada Aviation Museum in Winnipeg. I sent the letter along with a map showing a lake in the north that the Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba named "Nordick Lake" after my husband Bill Nordick, and a letter from the Lieutenant Governor congratulating him. I had to sign a release for the letter, so please don't tell me what it's worth. I'm happy that they are in the museum, Bill would like that. I just thought you would like to know Mrs. W. Nordick (Agnes)

Editor's note (of the CP Air News): Bill Nordick and Grant Williams, now CP Airs' manager, Interline sales development both began their careers with Arrow Airways in Manitoba in the late 1930s. Arrow was subsequently taken over by Canadian Airways, which In 1942 amalgamated with nine other airlines to become CP Air. Nordick remained with CP Air in Flin Flon as operator-agent until the summer of 1957 when CP Air's Manitoba routes were transferred to Transair. He then moved to Vancouver and worked as a senior airport agent until his retirement in 1973. He passed away May 10,1975.

Williams' letter to Nordick was on the first airmail flight between Dauphin, Man. and Flin Flon in 1947. In the early days of aviation, "first airmail flights" were novelties that attracted public attention and envelopes autographed by pilots were particularly treasured. Manitoba established a tradition of naming many of its northern lakes after prominent local residents, and in regard to Nordick Lake, Williams recalled: "When you thought of aviation in Flin Flon, you thought of Bill Nordick. He was the guy."

Image Blank 200pxYOU'VE GOT TO SEE IT to sell it, so 19 members of CP Air Holidays' newly-established U.K. division recently made a familiarization trip to Canada. All were from the res and sales staff. Back, from left, Liz Bowden, Penny Stevens, Sharon Walker, Keith Pendlebury, Dave Risby, Elaine Ropke, Liz Ebers, Linda Silver, Karen Laws and Carol Wickham. Front, Morag Kennedy, Janet Campbell, Melanie Watts, Hilary Caulton, Wendy Naylor, Debbie Ropke, Sally Ann Shipton, Nicky Miles and Annette Vincent

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.

Alan Lock has sent us a memory which due to its length, we will have the second part in NetLetter nr 1220:

Both my wife and I enjoy reading the NetLetter newsletter - please keep it up! I don't know if you might want to print any part of this, but it's a true story.

In 1962, I worked in the Terminal Center Building in Montreal with the title of "Reservations Facilities Assistant" where my job consisted of assisting in the design of Res. Offices - system wide. As the assistant, I traveled to the most exotic destinations such as Sudbury, Sault Ste Marie (where, in a DC3 we landed in Sault Ste Marie, Michigan and were escorted across the Canadian Border by U.S. Customs officials), etc.
One of my most exotic destinations was Stephenville, Nfld, to which I traveled in the Autumn of 1962. All Air Canada offices there were at the airport and, since these were old WWII buildings, the Architect's Office in HQ had no plans. So, in addition to making sure the office would be compatible for the installation of ReserVec (the first electronic reservations system), I had been requested to take measurements of the facilities, including placement of electrical outlets, etc. for the Architect's Office so they could draw up detailed plans of the facilities.

At that time, Stephenville had Vanguard service which traveled Montreal-Stephenville-Gander-St. Johns and returned the same route the same day. As I recall, it operated twice or three times weekly. Since I traveled on a Business Pass (ConC space available), I checked the load on the flight the day I was supposed to travel and found out it was "Wide open on both the outbound and return flights".  So I traveled with just my briefcase in which I always had a spare shirt, razor, - the bare necessities - JUST IN CASE.

I don't recall exact times, but within a three hour time frame of my arrival, I had finished my chores and now I just awaited the return flight so I could go home. PROBLEM!!! It seemed a Trans-At. flight inbound to YUL had an emergency, landed in Gander and cancelled the final leg to YUL so the passengers were booked on my home-bound flight. The flight was now FULL with no possibility of a PLUS getting on. The staff told me there were two motels/hotels in town. so I could check there. They told me that one would be 'OK' but to stay away from the other. After walking to town - it was a nice day - I checked the first motel - it was full. I even checked the one I was supposed to 'stay away from, it too was full. I walked back to the Airport and thought I'd stay in the waiting room. One of the staff was going off duty and told me I could spend some time at the USAF Base on the other side of the airport and at least have a cup of coffee or a meal there since Air Canada staff were allowed there as 'Honorary Guests'. The name of the USAF Base was "Harmon Air Force Base". He dropped me off there and I found my way to the cafeteria/mess.

To be continued in NetLetter nr 1220

Image Blank 200px We have had some response regarding the photo in NetLetter nr 1216 of the Frankfurt flight. From John Bell we have this: The Capt in this photo is Don "Smoky" Patry and I think the S/O is Ed Chorniak (Spelling), Can't really make out the others. John Bell

Doug Robinson of Flt. Ops, YYZ also points out the captain as Don "Smoky" Patry.

From Barry Gard we have this: In answer to your request for further info - The Captain is Don Patry, The person 2nd left is the navigator, whose name escapes me, I was the 2nd officer (with 1/2 a head in the rear). Cheers Barry Gard   
Brian Walsh sends us this timely suggestion: In case some readers are unaware, you might remind them that images can be enlarged by simply clicking on them. Cheers, Brian

Terry's Trivia and Travel Tips - by Terry Baker

Terry Baker

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Smileys - Compiled by Terry Baker
As we surf the internet and back issues of airline magazines we regularly find airline related jokes and cartoons. Below is our latest discovery.

Image Blank 200pxThis cartoon by Barencell was in the "Between Ourselves" issued January 1960.

The NetLetter is an email newsletter published (usually) once a week 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!

We hope you have enjoyed this issue of the NetLetter, see you next week!
Your NetLetter Team

Disclaimer: Please note, that neither the NetLetter or the ACFamily Network necessarily endorse any of the airline related or other "deals" that we provide for our readers. We would be interested in any feedback (good or bad) when using these companies though and will report the results here. We do not (normally) receive any compensation from any companies that we post in our newsletters. If we do receive a donation or other compensation, it will be indicated as a sponsored article or link.


E&OE - (errors and omissions excepted) - The historical information as well as any other information provided here is subject to correction and may have changed over time. We do publish corrections when they are brought to our attention.
First published in October, 1995
  • Chief Pilot - Terry Baker, Nanaimo, B.C.
  • Co-pilot - Alan Rust, Surrey, B.C.
  • Flight Engineer - Bill Rowsell, Londesboro, Ontario 
  • Stewardess - Lisa Ruck, Brooklin, Ontario 
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