Welcome to the October edition of the CAHS National Newsletter.
CAHS National News
2014 Journal Award Winners
Congratulations to Bill Upton who won the C. Don Long award for best article – Canadair’s Tutor-Emeritus. Part 1: Design and Development. Bill also received multiple votes for his second and third articles – Canadair’s Tutor-Emeritus. Part 2: CL-41 Prototype No.1 and Canadair’s Tutor-Emeritus. Part 3: CL-41 Prototype No.2 and the CL-41R.
Congratulations toPaddy Gardiner who won the Mac MacIntyre award for best researched article – Canada's Own: The Federal Aircraft Anson Mk.V.
Three CAHS Ottawa members – Lieutenant General William Carr, the late Brigadier General Keith Greenaway, and the late Group Captain Joe Schultz, will have streets named for them in the new development of Griesbach in Edmonton, AB.
The others honoured include Wing Commander Russ Bannock, Lieutenant General Don Laubman, Flight Lieutenant Robert (Bob) Morgan, Flight Lieutenant Johnnie Caine, and Brigadier General Bill Newson.
Story & photos by John Chalmers, CAHS Membership Secretary
On September 20 in Edmonton a new RCAF Commemorative Park was dedicated to the men and women who serve in the Royal Canadian Air Force. Starting with an inspection of an RCAF Guard of Honour from 408 (Tactical Helicopter) Squadron and Air Cadets by Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell, the dedication ceremonies concluded RCAF Week in Edmonton.
The installation is located in the Village at Griesbach development named for William Griesbach. He was a decorated soldier who participated in the Boer War and rose to the rank of Brigadier General in the First World War.
Bronze plaques honouring eight RCAF airmen with outstanding careers were unveiled as part of the program for the dedication. Named on the plaques are W/C Russell Bannock, DSO, DFC; F/L Johnnie Caine, DFC; LGen William Carr, CMM, DFC, CD; BGen Keith Greenaway, C.M., CMM, CD; LGen Donald Laubman, DFC, CD; F/L Robert Morgan, GM, CD; BGen William Newson, DSO, DFC, CD; and G/C Raine “Joe” Schultz, OMM, DFC, CD. In addition to commemorative plaques, streets in the air force area of the Griesbach district will be named for them.
Below is Edmonton-born wartime Mosquito pilot of City of Edmonton 418 RCAF Squadron, W/C Russ Bannock, honoured at the dedication ceremonies with a bronze plaque in his name and a street to be named for him. The restored Mosquito at the Alberta Aviation Museum in Edmonton, located in a 1941 BCATP hangar, is painted as the aircraft flown by him. Post-war, Russ served many years with de Havilland Canada in many capacities, including president.
A ten-metre high stainless steel monument representing a starburst aerobatic manoeuvre is the focal point of the plaza commemorating RCAF service. The purpose of the RCAF Commemorative Park was to focus on individuals with an Edmonton or Alberta connection. “We did not want the features, particularly the Ad Astra monument, to be a memorial,” says retired BGen Bill Buckham who served for over five years on the committee that developed the park. “The importance of the site is that it is the only public area in Edmonton that highlights the history and heritage of the air force and its connection to the city.”
Four granite panels engraved with photographs and text surround the Ad Astra monument and depict Canadian air force service from the First World War to the present.
Left to right at dedication ceremonies are three distinguished veterans: Robert Morgan, Russell Bannock and Donald Laubman; Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell; Bill Buckham, chairman of the Griesbach RCAF Commemorative Society; and Deputy Commander of the RCAF, MGen Al Meinzinger, representing the RCAF at the dedication.
The Ad Astra monument soars above informative panels, commemorative plaques and walkways shaped like the Spitfire, the Avro Arrow and the C-130 Hercules and overlooks Roundel Lake, a man-made feature at the centre of the housing development where the RCAF Commemorative Park is located. The organizing Society raised $250,000 to build the park and its dedication coincided with the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Britain.
* The following news articles are gathered from the Internet, and are provided for your interest. They are not reviewed to the same standard that Journal articles are reviewed, and may contain errors of fact, style, or grammar.
World War II vet Ken Lett, 91, stands next to a Cold War era fighter jet known as the Starfighter, which he flew, during its unveiling at the Military Museum in Calgary on October 22, 2014. PHOTO CREDIT: LEAH HENNEL LEAH HENNEL /CALGARY HERALD
There are too many harsh memories for Ken Lett to call it a dream come true, but the retired major-general is relieved the tribute is a fitting one.
The Military Museums in Calgary opened a unique exhibit on 26 September, 2015, marking the 40-year Cold War in which Canadian airmen roamed the skies of a world on the verge of annihilation.
Lett put up $1 million of his own money — the exhibit is named after him and his late wife Roma — and government and private donors contributed a matching amount to bring the dream to life.
The CF-18 Hornet, CF-5 Freedom Fighter, CF-104 Starfighter and the F-86 Sabre are the highlights of the exhibit, but this is not just about aircraft. The exhibit features artifacts and descriptions of a time when the threat of nuclear war was all too real.
Retired colonel Don Mathews, chairman of the Air Force Museum of Alberta and a veteran pilot, hopes the exhibit will illuminate a dangerous period in history — from 1949-89 — and Canada’s pivotal role in it.
“The aircraft are great. . . . but this is about the Cold War.”
Canada did rule the sky in the 1950s, developing a reputation for being the best pilots in Western Europe. “That was what the Soviets were looking at if they thought they were going to come across the border with any type of air power,” Mathews said.
The CF-104, the backbone of the Canadian force during many of those years, was capable of being equipped with nuclear weapons at a moment’s notice. It was a joint U.S.-Canada arrangement — the Americans owning the bombs and Canada the planes.
Mathews said there was no doubt those bombs would be dropped if the need had arisen.
“NATO was serious . . . and we (were) not afraid to use nuclear weapons. We were a very hard-nosed alliance and it worked,” said Mathews.
He believes the lessons learned in those fraught decades should not be forgotten.
“There are so many people who have never even heard of the Cold War. They don’t realize what a strong, active alliance NATO was and what a strong partner Canada was during that 40-year conflict,” he added.
Lett, now a sprightly 92-year-old, began flying Spitfires as a teenager in the Second World War and piloted the first in-service CF-104 in 1961.
“This was a pretty fine airplane. I was a lucky guy who had a squadron of them — 20 to 30 young pilots and 25 airplanes — and we roamed the skies of Europe unchallenged at that time.
“It could be deadly, especially for the beginners. It is difficult to introduce a group of young, newly trained pilots into a fighter operation without losing some.”
During those tense decades, 37 Canadian airmen were killed in crashes involving the CF-104 alone. Such memories are not easily forgotten for Lett. But remembering their sacrifice during a time of intense threat is important.
“The Cold War was never really in the history books. Yet it was such an important part of Canada’s history. It went on for a lot of years, a lot of years in which you were always on the alert,” he said.
Elinor Florence and Anne Gafiuk were at the Bomber Command Museum of Canada on Saturday, September 19, 2015. Elinor gave her wonderful talk about her inspirations for her book, Bird's Eye View. Elinor mentioned Anne Gafiuk's new scrapbook She Made Them Family during her presentation. Both Elinor and Anne were dressed in their 'vintage' outfits for the occasion!
In partnership with the Okotoks Museum and the BCMC, the book launch for She Made Them Family will take place on Sunday, November 8, 2015 at the Rotary Performing Arts Centre in Okotoks, Alberta, 3 Elma Street East, with a special auction planned to benefit both the BCMC and the Okotoks Museum.
Gafiuk will be in attendance at the launch. Several of the World War II veterans who are featured in the book have also been invited to attend. Special edition copies will be auctioned during the launch with proceeds benefitting the Bomber Command Museum of Canada in Nanton and the Okotoks Museum and Archives.
For further information, please contact author Anne Gafiuk, 403-241-2983, email@example.com, or the Okotoks Museum and Archives, 403-938-8969.
Canadian Aviation Moments
We hope you enjoyed answering the Canadian Aviation Moments in September. We encourage readers to send in their responses to the Canadian Aviation Moments questions at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Your responses will be included in the following month's newsletter. Here are the correct answers:
Question: Who in the RAF in 1936 was a key proponent of a heavy versus a medium bomber force and would eventually win the argument for a longer-range offensive capability?
Answer: “In 1936, one of the key proponents of a heavy versus a medium bomber force was Group Captain Arthur Harris, Bomber Command's Deputy Director of Plans at the time. An Englishman who spent a number of his formative years in Rhodesia, Harris would win his argument for a longer-range offensive capability. A new specification thus called for a bomber capable of flying 3000 miles while carrying a bomb payload of 8000 pounds at 28,000 feet. The four-engine Short Stirling of 1941 was developed to meet these criteria, and this aircraft proved to be significantly disappointing with respect to the specified service ceiling. In 1938, further specifications were issued for an ideal bomber, which also possessed much better defensive armament so that it could cope with the latest generation of fighter aircraft. It was also to have a top speed of 300 mph and the ability to carry 12,000 pounds of bombs. These capabilities would eventually be achieved by modifying the designs of two-engine bombers into successful four-engine variants. They would evolve into the Lancaster and the Halifax, which would become the mainstay aircraft of the Command from 1942 onwards.”
Source:No Prouder Place – Canadians and The Bomber Command Experience 1939 – 1945 – David L. Bashow – ISBN 1-55125-098-5 – Page 18
Question: What type and mark of aircraft was used by the No. 664 and 665 Squadrons? When was the aircraft taken on strength and struck off strength and how many were taken on strength?
Answer: “A light observation aircraft, the Auster Taylorcraft Mk IV was introduced by the Canadian Army during the fighting in Northwest Europe in 1945. The primary role of the aircraft was artillery spotting and the aircraft carried a pilot and observer in this role. Two Canadian squadrons, designated No. 664 and 665 Squadron, were equipped with these aircraft. 664 Squadron served in the Canadian Army Occupation Force in post-war activities until its disbandment in May 1946.” “TOS: 1944 SOS: 1946 No: 12”
Source:Canadian Combat and Support Aircraft – A Military Compendium – T.F. J. Leversedge – ISBN 978-1-55125-116-5 – Page 55
Question: What Canadian Squadron was credited with the last 2nd Tactical Air Force Mustang kill of the war, on April 16, 1945?
Answer: “No. 442(F) Squadron converted from Spitfires to the Mustang IV (P-51D) in the spring of 1945 and flew long-range bomber escort missions. The unit was credited with the last 2nd Tactical Air Force Mustang kill of the war on April 16, 1945.”
The Canadian Aviation Moments were submitted by Dennis Casper from the Roland Groome (Regina) Chapter of the CAHS.
The Canadian Aviation Moments questions for October are:
Question: In 1919 and 1920, the British Government bestowed upon Canada a number of different types of airplanes with associated equipment. This was called “The Imperial Gift.” What Imperial Gift aircraft occupied the public spotlight 1 October 1920?
Source:Canadian Aviation Historical Society Journal – Vol.47 No.1 – Spring 2009 – Page 29.
Question: In what year did the RFC decide to establish a training organization in Canada? How many stations and training squadrons were established in that year?
Source:Canadian Combat and Support Aircraft – A Military Compendium – T.F.J. Leversedge – Page 22
Question: What aircraft type was modified with the 180 hp Wolseley Viper water-cooled engine (S.E. 5A fighter design) and what was it used for by the RCAF?
Source:Canadian Combat and Support Aircraft – A Military Compendium – T.F.J. Leversedge – Page 58
From Around the World
Battle Of Britain Photographs Reveal The Faces Of The Royal Air Force's Finest Moment Of World War II
The Huffington Post UK | By George Bowden
For close to four months, the Battle of Britain raged above the British Isles.
In July 1940, and having decisively won the Battle of France, Germany re-focused its efforts across the Channel, embarking upon an air war with the ultimate ambition to facilitate an invasion by air and sea.
Britain's Royal Air Force and the Royal Canadian Air Force, and pilots from at least 14 other nations, helped defend Britain from the Luftwaffe.
544 pilots from the UK, the Commonwealth and other Allied nations died in the battle, with over 400 thought to have been injured.
The week of September 15, 2015 marks the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain's most decisive day - September 15th, 1940.
These stunning photographs reveal the faces of those who piloted the planes, reminding us of the human stories behind Britain's finest hour...
We have shared a few of the photos below. To view them all, click here.
An RAF pilot at Hawkinge Airport in Kent, during World War II, July 1940. (Photo by Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
An RAF pilot at Hawkinge Airport in Kent, during World War II, July 1940. (Photo by Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
News from the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum:
REUNION OF GIANTS, the much-anticipated official Lancaster UK Tour documentary, will be available on Nov. 24, 2015. This 83-minute documentary, available in DVD and Blu-ray formats, covers the historic flight of the CWHM Lancaster, VeRA, as it met its British counterpart, Thumper, the only other surviving flight worthy Lancaster bomber in the world. This production can be pre-ordered from the CWHM gift shop and is being offered at sale prices which end on Nov. 24. See the CWHM website for more information.
A Norseman Mk. V, the CWHM's latest acquisition, arrived at the museum on Sept. 25, 2015. Registered CF-GSR, s/n N29-47, the Norseman was partially donated by Huron Air and Oufitters Ernie and Donna Nicholl. The Norseman delivery began two weeks earlier when the aircraft was ferried on floats from Ignace, ON, to the Orillia seaplane base, where the floats were removed and the wheels installed so the aircraft could land at the museum's base at Hamilton International Airport. Aviation photo journalist Eric Dumigan reports that the airframe and engine are in great condition, and the CWH plans to have the Norseman join the museum's ride program in 2016. Although the airframe never saw RCAF service, the CWH plans to configure and paint the aircraft in RCAF markings when time and funds permit. No decision has been made on which RCAF markings the airframe will carry.
THE SECRET IS OUT! The Secrets of Radar Museum is the recipient of $10,000 grant
London, ON — The Secrets of Radar Museum is proud to announce it is the winner of $10,000 in EMC Corporation's 2015 Heritage Trust Project international competition. A total of three winners was selected from seven finalists following a two-week public voting period in August.
The prize recognizes and supports local organizations worldwide that advocate the digitization, preservation, and improved accessibility of significant cultural resources. The award will assist the museum in the digitization of its WWII and Cold War archival collections and veteran oral histories through project staff funding, equipment, and online collection access.
“For a museum like Secrets of Radar, which is a very small organisation, receiving $10,000 is a really big deal,” says museum curator Maya Hirschman. “It means we can dedicate time and resources to preserving and sharing our collection, rather than simply keeping our doors open. It will mean greater access to our unique collections, not just for researchers, but anyone.”
“This is an incredible opportunity for our museum,” says John Millson, President of the Secrets of Radar Museum Board of Directors. “We are deeply grateful to EMC Corporation for the award and to everyone who voted for our project in the competition.”
About the Museum: During World War II, at the request of the British government, over 6,000 Canadians were trained on a brand new, top secret technology: radar. Sworn to an oath of secrecy not fully lifted until the 1990s, it has only been over the last 20 years that these men and women could openly share their experiences. Canadian radar personnel were a crucial part of the war effort and many of these early radar veterans went on to have leadership roles in the development of radar during the Cold War and in the Canadian electronics industry.
Founded in 2001 and opened to the public on May 24, 2003, the Secrets of Radar Museum is an incorporated not-for-profit museum located in London, Ontario. It is committed to sharing Canadian radar history, from its earliest secret experimentation to recent advances, and most importantly, to the preservation of real life stories and personal experiences of the people who have worked in radar.
September 28, 2015 Press Release
Sale of Private Collection Aviation Books
A message from David Wright:
I am planning to sell my private collection of first and early editions which include the OLD AVIATION BOOKS. CLICK HERE for a link to the book listing.
I can offer a reduction of 10% on the stated prices to society members: postage and insurance are extra at cost and payment is only required on receipt.
Sound Venture Productions (in Ottawa) is producing a three part documentary about aviation in World War I. The first part is largely about reconnaissance pilots and aerial cartography, and then we turn to some of the Flying Aces. We are profiling six pilots, including: Arthur Roy Brown, Andrew McKeever, Donald MacLaren, Carl Falkenberg, Joseph Fall, and the sixth is a little up in the air (so to speak).
We wanted a pan-Canadian look at our national WWI heroes, but we're having difficulty with Quebec. We started with Clarence MacLaurin, but the Director decided to change to Gerald Birks (grandson of Henry Birks, jewelry icon) due to difficulty finding sources to talk about the legacy of MacLaurin. Unfortunately, we're having the same challenge with Birks. We've done quite well with finding sources on all the other pilots, but finding Quebec-related sources has been more challenging. We're also looking into Stanley Stanger and William McKenzie Thompson.
If you or someone you know is able to talk about the contributions of a Quebec Flying Ace, that is our top priority at this point. We are also looking for photos, videos, and artifacts of all of the pilots I've listed, so if you know of any good resources it would be a great help.
The link to our production is www.anationsoars.ca for more insight on the project. You can also contact me with any questions.
"Did you work at RAF* Clinton during the Second World War? Are you or do you know of such a veteran who may still be living nearby? We are especially in need of veterans who were there during the very early period of the war (1941-1944) and still have memories of working on radar technology and the radar training school while Station Clinton was part of the Royal Air Force (RAF). Do you know of a veteran who did so, and who would like to talk about it?
CBC is currently researching the village of Vanastra and its former military history. A decision or a commitment to such a project has not yet been made. Nevertheless, if you are one of those veterans, or you know of such a veteran, AND, the veteran lives in close proximity, please give every consideration to contacting their Researcher, either by e-mail ( email@example.com ) or by phone (Toronto): 416-324-8537 ext. 293.
The deadline for contacting the researcher with your contact information, or contact information for the veteran in question, is Wednesday 28 October 2015. Thank you for considering this important research issue."
*Use of the term "RAF", rather than "RCAF", is the Researcher's intent.
The CAHS extends its condolences on the passing of long-time CAHS member Ross Herrington. Ross had been on the Regina chapter executive for many years and was very involved in all of the national conventions that were hosted in the Queen city.
Ross Herrington (1946 – 2015)
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Ross Herrington. Ross passed away on Friday, October 16, 2015. He was predeceased by his parents Len and Peggy Herrington. Ross is survived by his loving wife Dale Herrington (née Smutylo); daughter Carolyn Anne Herrington (husband Paul Sanden); grandsons Evan Ross and Matthew Henry Sanden; sisters Lynn Poustie (husband John), Lesley Herrington (husband Randy Johnson); nephews Cameron Poustie and Ian Poustie and their families; and brothers- in- law Barry Smutylo (Patsy Tymchuk) and Ken Smutylo. Ross was a caring husband, father, brother, grandfather (Poppa) and friend.
He contributed in countless ways to his family and to his community, and his company was enjoyed by many wherever he went. Above all, he will be remembered for his gentle, supportive, and good-hearted nature, and for his ability to put those around him at ease. He treasured his family and friends near and far and diligently kept in touch with all of them. Ross loved being in his garden, playing with his grandsons, reading, and researching. He enjoyed his neighbourhood and loved chatting with all who stopped by. He was also an avid volunteer in his community. Among Ross’s many additional interests were aviation history, architectural heritage, carpentry, genealogy, photography, soccer, golfing, biking, badminton, and tracking the weather.
Ross was born in Blackpool, England and moved to Winnipeg with his family in 1957. Dale and Ross were married in Winnipeg in May 1969. He earned a B.A. and M.A. in Physical Geography from the University of Manitoba and a M. Sc. in Civil Engineering from the University of Saskatchewan. He taught water sciences technology at Kelsey Institute of Applied Arts and Sciences in Saskatoon and following that he worked for Environment Canada in Regina where he remained until his retirement in 2007. He then pursued many other interests, particularly a passion for Saskatchewan’s architecture. He continued work as a researcher and writer, documenting the history of various buildings and structures in Regina and across Saskatchewan. In this role, he contributed to many publications, such as the Saskatchewan Encyclopedia, Façade: Architectural Heritage News Magazine, and Architecture in Saskatchewan. We would like to thank the paramedics and the emergency staff at the Regina General Hospital. We would also like to thank the family, friends and neighbours who supported Dale at a very difficult time.
A Memorial Service was held at Speers Funeral Chapel, 2136 College Avenue, Regina, SK, on Friday October 23, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Ross may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, 279 3rd Avenue North, Saskatoon, SK, S7K 2H8.
“We will carry your heart with us. We will carry it in our hearts.”
Anna Alina Zurakowski, the widow of Jan Zurakowski who was known as a test pilot for the CF-100 and the Avro Arrow, died on September 6. She was born in Łańcut, Poland on December 3, 1921. During the Second World War she worked as a radio announcer and newspaper reporter. Anna married Janusz Zurakowski in Paris shortly after the war and lived in England until 1952 when the couple moved to Canada.
Anna had a diverse range of experiences, including running a gift shop on Roncesvalles Avenue in Toronto. In 1960, Anna and Janusz opened Kartuzy Lodge in Barry's Bay which they operated for close to 50 years. Anna was very active in cultural and heritage circles, and was President of the Polish Heritage Institute - Kaszuby for several years. She authored several books and publications and was a contributor to Polish newspapers. Among various awards Anna is a recipient of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland (1966).
Anna is survived by sons George (Julie), Mark (Susan) and grandchildren Krysia and Paul, Robin (Ian), Tamara and Paige (John) and great-grandchildren Ben and Arie, Jake and Nicholas and Isla.
(With files from the Ottawa Citizen) Click here to read more.
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