Today in aviation history – August 27, 1959

aviation history

CH-46C Labrador

First flight of the Boeing Vertol CH-46C Labrador helicopter. 

This aircraft is a twin-engine, tandem-rotor search and rescue (SAR) helicopter used by the Canadian Forces from 1963 until 2004. It was a variant of the Boeing Vertol CH-46 Sea Knight designed and built in the United States. A search and rescue version was purchased by the Royal Canadian Air Force in the early 1960s and became known as the Labrador. Soon after, the Canadian Army acquired a troop and cargo version known as the Voyageur. In the mid-1970s, these army machines were replaced by CH-147 Chinook heavy lift and transport helicopters and the Voyageurs were transferred to the air force when Air Command was formed in 1975. They joined the Labradors on search and rescue duties and all were modified to a common search and rescue standard.

Picture above was taken at the Canadian Aviation Museum in Ottawa.  From their website :

Labrador #301, the first to enter service with the Canadian Forces and the last to retire, was delivered to the Canada Aviation Museum in July, 2004 and marked the retirement from active service of the illustrious Labrador fleet. Its place in Canada’s national aeronautical collection is a tribute to the men and women of the Search and Rescue community who risk their lives on a daily basis to save others.


Today in aviation history – August 26, 1982

aviation history, Space

Anik D1

The Anik D1 satellite is launched by Telesat Canada to provide television signals across the country.  A Hughes Aircraft HS376, Anik (which means “little brother” in Inuktitut) D1 was retired in 1991.

Telesat Canada launched a number of Anik models between 1972 and 2007 with 3 still in operation.  Launch vehicles included Delta, Ariane and Proton/Breeze-M rockets and 4 were launched from the Space Shuttles – Discovery, Challenger and Columbia.

Today in aviation history – August 15, 1940

aviation history


Squadron Leader E. A. McNab becomes the first RCAF pilot to record a kill in the Battle of Britain.  McNab was Commanding Officer with the No 1 (RCAF) Squadron and shot down a further 6 aircraft during the war.  He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross on the 22nd of October, 1940 before returning to Canada.  He was also awarded the Czech Military Cross.

He retired in 1957 and passed away on January 10, 1977.

Moving history

"Canadian Air & Space Museum", aviation, photo, Space


A rare opportunity.  Big preparations today at the Canadian Air and Space Museum for tomorrow’s press conference and announcement timed to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing.

Our special guest, of the aircraft variety, is the Silver Dart replica.  Built to honor the 100th anniversary of powered in flight in Canada, she flew on February 20th on the same frozen lake on Cape Breton Island.  Dedicated volunteers spent thousands of hours building the replica and we’re so very happy to have her on hand for our celebration.  Watch for some big news!


I was really lucky to spend some time up close before we moved her to the big hanger.  Very surprised to see this modification.  Pretty sure it wasn’t on the original but I’m sure it comes in handy when you’re sitting in a completely open cockpit on a windswept lake in February.