I was happy to be asked to join Portia Clark on CBC Edmonton’s Radio Active March 7th to talk about women in aviation. Of course the topic of that recent WestJet napkin about the “lady pilot” came up, as well as why only 5% of pilots in Canada are women. Want to hear the (approximately 7-minute) interview? Click here!
After the interview, I received emails from a couple of sharp-eared listeners who picked up on my mention of the Air Cadets. According to one source I consulted, they weren’t allowed in officially until 1975. Here’s what the listeners said:
John Hicks of Ft. McMurray, AB said:
“I knew them as Air Cadettes, and they were there when I joined in 1968. May be that they weren’t officially recognized by the Air Cadet Association, or Air Cadet League of Canada (I don’t know), but they did exist at 89 Pacific Squadron (Victoria). Was a full (separate) flight in a squadron of four flights, and a band. Not sure if other squadrons went that route as well about that same time.”
Denis Budd said:
“I was in Air Cadets in Victoria (No. 89 SQN) and was the Sr W/O of the SQN in the early 1960s. As I recall, there were quite a high number of young women in our Squadron at that time. There were actually enough to have their own Flight! Perhaps you were referring to Air Cadets Sqns in Alberta.”
As I told them, this is one instance where I was very happy to be proved wrong! A little bit more digging and I came up with this: In 1975, the legislation was changed to officially allow women into the Royal Canadian Sea, Army, and Air Cadets. (via https://www.27aircadets.org/airCadetHistory.html)