“I enjoyed Polar Winds very much – it brought back a lot of memories of various operations that I knew of, or was involved in, during my 30 years in the Air Force.
Most of my career was spent on Search and Rescue, initially with 123 Search and Rescue Flight at Sea Island, B.C. where I was posted after completing Pilot Training on the 5 March 1949.
There are two items in your book that I can show my friends and say I had an input. The first is the picture of the three Alberts [Grumman Albatrosses] on their steps on page 128. The photographer took the picture from an
H-21 that I was flying. We were attempting to duplicate a famous photograph taken during the war in the same location of three Cansos.
The second item is the mention on page 146 that an RCAF helicopter had flown Senator Kennedy to the base camp on Mount Kennedy. I was the pilot of that helicopter, CH113 10402. However, we had only gone into Whitehorse to refuel because Juneau Alaska, the closest airport to Trapper Lake, where we were recovering Para Rescue equipment that had been left there the previous fall, did not have JP 4. We had refueled and were about to take off when the tower advised us that we had better wait because Senator Kennedy was trying to get permission from the Prime Minister to use our helicopter because the weather was below limits at the mountain for fixed wing aircraft. He did get permission and we ended up working for the National Geographic for the next week before we were able to return to Comox. Two months later we were tasked to return to Whitehorse and recover a Bell 47 helicopter that had been stranded at the 13000 level on Mount Kennedy. We completed that task on the 15 May 1965.
A rather flowery article in the local weekly covering some other operations I was involved in during my career can be seen in the May 6,2010 issue of www.islandclippings.com. Incidently the Norwegian Captain referred to in the Rumba incident in the article, along with his wife Sigrid, were surprise guests at our 60th wedding anniversay anniversary at which he gave a great speech from his perspective of the rescue of himself and his crew.
Once again thank you for your very informative book.