Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame Induction Dinner – Montreal June 14


Tickets are now on sale through the CAHF website. For more information or to buy, please click here!

2012 Hall of Fame inductees will be:

  • Nils Christensen of Salt Spring Island, BC, made his contribution to Canadian  aviation with the founding of Viking Air and the acquisition of the rights from de Havilland Canada to manufacture spares for some of its post-war products. The venture has given rise to an internationally reputed aircraft and parts manufacturing concern.  Born in Norway in 1921, Nils served in the Merchant Navy and the Royal Norwegian Air Force during the Second World War and, emigrated to Canada in 1951.
  • Air Marshal Harold “Gus” Edwards (1892-1952) was born in England and raised in Nova Scotia. He served as a pilot with the Royal Naval Air Service in the First World War and was later intimately involved with the founding of the RCAF. Gus was in charge of the monumental personnel management aspects of the BCATP when it began and then fought successfully for the “Canadianization” of the RCAF’s contributions to Allied efforts in the RAF as Air Office Commanding-in-Chief of RCAF Overseas.
  • Pierre Jeanniot, O.C. C.Q., who was born in France in 1933 and emigrated to Canada in 1947, is a former president and CEO of Air Canada, known as an innovator in the field of airline operations and management. An internationally recognized leader in the airline industry, he contributed to the development of civil aviation in Canada and around the world. His work in Air Canada and with the International Air Transport Association as Director General and CEO has been recognized with honours from Canada, France and international organizations.
  • Dr. Daffyd (Dave) Williams, born in Saskatoon in 1954, is a pilot, medical doctor and a retired Canadian astronaut of outstanding skill, management ability and accomplishment in his work with the Canadian Space Agency. He was appointed Director of NASA’s Space and Life Sciences Directorate, a rare accomplishment for a non-American astronaut. Dave made two flights on the Space Shuttle, 1998 and 2007, and in the second was involved in three spacewalks for installations at the International Space Station.

The Belt of Orion winner for 2012 is Leavens Aviation Inc.

The company began as Leavens Brothers Air Services in 1927, and is one of Canada’s great aviation  success stories. Its life encompassed several aspects of aviation in Canada and operated until 2011, starting with barnstorming a single aircraft, then flight training, running a major training facility under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP), spraying operations, commercial airline operations, light aircraft manufacturing and the sale, distribution and overhaul of aircraft parts.

Nominations for the CAHF’s 2013 induction are open until June 30th. For more information, please click here.

Legal Aliens Welcomed at Greater Green River Intergalactic Spaceport

In the 15 years since NASA predicted Jupiter would be struck by a series of large meteors and comets, no Jovians have appeared on Green River’s doorstep.

The welcome mat is out, however, as Dina Mishev wrote in her 2007 book, Wyoming Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities & Other Offbeat Stuff (Global Pequot). On July 5, 2004, perhaps still buoyed by Independence Day celebrations, former mayor George Eckman and the city council passed resolution no. R94-23 “allowing any citizens of Jupiter to take sanctuary in their town.” The resolution was passed five votes to two and the Greater Green River Intergalactic Spaceport was born.

As the resolution reads: “All residents of the City of Green River [should] be encouraged to observe this momentous event and prepare themselves to make welcome any refugees who might cast themselves upon our mercy.”

Mayor Eckman told the Rocket Miner after the resolution had been passed, “I feel it is a gesture that could be made and should be made by someone on the planet Earth to fellow citizens of the solar system.”

No Jovians – or any other extraterrestrials, for that matter – have taken the community up on its offer. It might be just as well, however, as those opposed to the resolution noted that Green River was already facing a housing crisis and council members wondered how the newcomers might integrate into the local workforce.

Nevertheless, you can still visit the spaceport just south of Green River on route 530 toward Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area, or virtually by selecting it as your airport in the Flight Simulator computer game. To learn more about the spaceport, you can ask for Dina Mishev’s book ( or Images of America: Green River, written by local authors Terry Del Bene, Ruth Lauritzen, and Cyndi McCullers, at the Sweetwater Libraries.

The only evidence that this strip of desert might be for aircraft is the solitary windsock.

Could these markings in the sand have been made by anything other than

joy-riding teenagers? I wonder….

© 2011 Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail. All Rights Reserved.