2016 CAHF Inductees Announced

Fred.pictureWonderful news from Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame. Fred Carmichael from Inuvik, NWT will be recognized for his incredible achievements and contributions. I am so happy I was able to help honour him by nominating this amazing aviator! After interviewing him in 2010 and writing about him in Polar Winds, I knew he deserved it. Congrats, Fred, Kathy, and all the rest!


Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame (CAHF) will induct four new members, and recognize a Belt of Orion recipient, at its 43rd annual gala dinner and ceremony, to be held Thursday June 9, 2016, at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum, at Rockcliffe Airport in Ottawa.
The new members are:

CAHF inductees are selected for their contributions to Canada’s development through their integral roles in the nation’s aviation history. This year’s inductees will join the ranks of the 220 esteemed men and women inducted since the Hall’s formation in 1973.

Tom Appleton, CAHF chairman of the board of directors, said, “The CAHF is proud to honour these four well-deserving individuals for their significant contributions to Canadian aviation, and to Canada’s development as a nation.

“Our 2016 inductees come from backgrounds that span the width of Canada’s unique aviation industry. Aviation has brought Canadians together as a country, unlike any other form of transport. Our new inductees reflect that cohesion through their pioneering activities and spirit.”

Holiday Moving Sale!


I realized I have 12 copies of Polar Winds and 24 copies of For the Love of Flying hanging around in my basement, ready for a new home. I don’t feel like boxing them up and moving them down to Texas, so I am offering signed and personalized copies to you for $30, shipping and taxes included (in Canada. Please contact me for US and International rates)! I may throw in some extra treats as well, because I like playing Santa.

If you’d like them to arrive before Christmas, contact me by 9am MST on Friday, December 11!



Search is on for Edmonton’s Fourth Historian Laureate!

My two-year term as YEG’s third Historian Laureate winds up in late March 2016 and so it’s time to find someone new to fill the role. The Edmonton Historical Board and Edmonton Heritage Council co-manage the position and they’ve issued the call for nominations (self-nominations are acceptable too). Deadline is December 16th!

If you or someone you know are a resident of Edmonton, passionate about history and heritage, and have been involved in a committed and considerable way – check it out! It’s an honorarium-based position and there’s a ton of flexibility to add it to your existing life/career.

Feel free to ask me any questions about the role by leaving a comment below, sending me a tweet at @danicanuck, a note on Facebook, or a message through the contact form on this website.


Hosting Simon Winchester

This past Sunday I had the distinct pleasure of hosting author Simon Winchester for the LitFest finale event in Edmonton. What a fascinating, well-travelled and thoughtful fellow! I’d like to think we hit it off and I certainly had a ball being on stage with him. In fact, we even ended up matching outfits inadvertently!


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Miles logged since 2014: 215,000

I always pack: A Leica M6 loaded with black-and-white film, a Silva compass, my Boy Scout can opener, a Moleskine notebook, and Wrigley’s gum—on a road trip through northwestern China, I used some to plug a gas leak and it actually held for five miles.

My favorite luggage is: A small red Globe-Trotter case—no wheels, always carried on.

My iPad is loaded with: Hundreds of research books, like Henry T. Brown’s 507 Mechanical Movements: Mechanisms & Devices.

On planes I’ll eat: Anything that’s put in front of me, but I love the Indian vegetarian meal on Cathay Pacific.

The app I use most on the road is: Tunein radio, so I can listen to the shipping forecast on BBC. It’s comforting to hear about storm-force winds battering ships in Finisterre as I fall asleep

Simon Winchester’s latest book, Pacific, is out this month (HarperCollins, $29)


Canadian Women in the Sky

There’s a new book about women in aviation in this country and it comes to you from Elizabeth (Liz) Muir. I was happy to write the foreword to Canadian Women in the Sky: 100 Years of Flight, her exploration and celebration of some of the fantastic women involved in flight in Canada. It is an enjoyable read with lots of great photos. Anything we can do to increase knowledge about these feisty pioneers and inspire the next generation of fly-girls is fine by me!

Here’s a taste from my foreword:

I remember reading once that a plane cannot tell if its pilot is a man or a woman. I was profoundly struck by it. Of course, I thought to myself, it’s so obvious. But for most of our history with aviation, women were told their place was not in the cockpit or the flight deck, or anywhere near an airplane – except, perhaps, as a “stewardess”, as flight attendants were called back then.

Elizabeth Muir shows through the stories in this book that though they were discouraged from it, women wanted desperately to work in aviation from its earliest days. Through determination, pluck, and training, women like Katherine Stinson, Elsie MacGill, Vi Milstead Warren, Felicity McKendry, Roberta Bondar, Maryse Carmichael and others that you will meet in the pages of this book, accomplished amazing things and reached their dreams. They flew the first flying contraptions that were just a collection of struts and wires all the way through to bush planes, four-engine military bombers, waterbombers, and helicopters. They designed and built warplanes and trainers. They went into the skies and into space.


And here’s a link to the Q&A I just did with Liz for the Dundurn site. It was great to learn more about what brought Liz to the project, what surprised her the most about women in aviation, and the one myth she keeps hearing from audiences!

© 2011 Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail. All Rights Reserved.