Sunday, February 25, 2007

:::AIR FRANCE 358::..:.

…I WAS there. Both days (August 2 - 3, 2005). This was the day after the accident.

"680 NEWS…Air France Crash update!"

Blah…blah…blah…(but in the background I hear…"the bus for the photographers leaves in 10 minutes!")

Can I make it? I just happen to be one exit past the airport.

Well I did. As you can see…

The WEATHER CHANNEL used over 20 of my photographs for their special segment on the "weather-related" crash of Air France 358…but NEVER DID settle up!

They had no problem using my photos…just a problem in paying.


The "little guys" are always more honest.

I'LL LET EVERYONE know how it goes in court this spring!

MORE Air France Flight 358 CRASH INFO:

THE BIGGEST Toronto AIR DISASTER was in 1970, SEE:

Friday, February 23, 2007


February 20, 1959

PM Diefenbaker cancels the AVRO Arrow programme immediately putting 25, 000 Toronto GTA aerospace employees out of work.

MOST CANADIANS never forgive this blunder.

"THE AVRO ARROW was a fantastic performing aircraft…"

"I had flown it to 1.9 Mach myself…"

"…and we had 2.3 – 2.4 Mach potential…and in 1958…THERE WASN’T another airplane in the world ANYWHERE NEAR being competitive with this airplane."

Peter Cope,
Boeing Test Pilot
(for the 727, 737, 747, 757 and 767)

For Avro veterans, the Arrow romance is rich with regret and nostalgia.

"You sit there in a hotel room full of white-haired men and listen to their testimony," he says. "These are people who went on to land a man on the moon, but they said working on the Arrow was the best time of their lives. There was this spirit of enthusiasm and creativity at Avro that they never felt again. You could just tell it was like the Apple Corp. of the 1950s."

CBC Mini-series, The Arrow

“I can't blame old Devil “Dief” for that. But where I do blame him is in the vindictive and vengeful way the planes were destroyed. That one or two weren't saved is the real black horror of the story."

Dan Aykroyd,
Actor in the CBC Mini-series, “The Arrow”
(played Crawford Gordon, President, A.V. Roe Canada Ltd.)

“Seeing those beautiful planes being demolished - I'll never forgive them for that."

Elwy Yost,
Host, Saturday Night At The Movies
(former Avro Personnel Manager)

“The GOVERNMENT OF CANADA had rank amateurs trying to sell the best interceptor in the world to countries who already had their own interceptor programs! So when these countries predictably said, “No”, the Canadian government threw up their hands and told the public, “We have a dud…it can’t be sold!

I could easily have sold 100 AVRO Arrows to the United States!

They didn’t have a long range, high speed, independent, and so electronically advanced interceptor. Only recently (mid-80s) the F-18 Hornet achieved this status, that the Arrow had already achieved in 1959.

In 1959, the United States was very interested in buying some Canadian land near Santa Claus. Had they purchased the Arrows, I would have given them that damn, useless piece (to us as Canadians, very useful to Americans) of rock and snow!”

Way up there at the North Pole…they would have appreciated our all weather, LONG RANGE, fly-by-wire Arrows!

Paul Cardin,
Friends of Flight 621

I'VE INCLUDED clips from the movie, "The Arrow", starring Dan Aykroyd (Blues Brothers, Ghostbusters etc.) as CRAWFORD GORDON, the former president of AVRO Canada…

This is how the creation of the AVRO Arrow all began…a challenge to overcome the "impossible".

The AVRO ARROW 201 prep, first take-off, maiden flight and first landing! ALL CLIPS are comprised of actual and special effects footage. All clips are copyright CBC and if you are an aviation nut, buy the 3 hour movie. It is called, "The Arrow" and the CBC store carries it! DEFINITELY worth it!!

I INCLUDED several clips showing the Arrow in action:

© 2007 Special Projects IR
©1997 Maclean's ©1975 CBC's There Never Was An Arrow ©1980 Avro Arrow

AVRO Mansion…and the "One" That Got Away.

WHEN A.V. ROE Canada Limited started to unravel as a company it had already become the 3rd largest company in Canada within only a few short years.

AVRO was not only building the famed Avro Arrow, and those FLYING SAUCERS (the Avrocars), but it had also set its’ sights on a venture into space!

Even more importantly, and even more secretly than the Arrow and Iroquois projects, AVRO Canada had embarked on another large-scale goal known to only a select few. AVRO Canada was already midstride in building a large, “vertically integrated” empire of enterprise!

This was the goal, not only according to famed aviation author Peter Zuuring, Avro and Arrow expert, but according to others as well.

It was here, on this 11-acre parcel of land, high above the streets of Toronto, where details of the “empire” could be discussed with an absolute guarantee of privacy.

Here…far away from the Government of Canada, the RCAF, the “moles” inside the Avro plants, and all others who just didn’t understand INDUSTRY, plans for this collossal empire were being forged, and then routinely executed. Expansion through acquisition.

Viscount Montgomery, “Monty” (formerly commander of the Eighth British Army in North Africa during WW II), was entertained by AVRO Canada and enjoyed a private dinner with other notables here, back in the heyday of both Avro and the mansion.

Ironically enough, this English style palace is only two stone throws…maybe three…from the elementary school I had attended from kindergarten to Grade six! I even stumbled upon this “mystery mansion” when I was riding around the area on my Duomatic bike one day.

In Avro’s last days…there had been many, mysterious midnight runs from the Avro Malton facility to Ottawa.

But there was only one such “run” to this refuge. And it was here, at that very last stronghold of AVRO Canada…where very likely the “one that got away” ended up. Brought here, under a shroud of secrecy, during a very well-planned, and well-executed “midnight run”.

I once met a white and wispy haired old man, so long ago now – at an aviation trade show convention. He had overheard me talking about the Avro Arrow to a woman who had recently completed a labour of love: a highly detailed, rectangular quilt of the Arrow in level flight.

He interrupted our talk and grabbed me by the arm (rather forcefully I might add), turned me about, and said, “It’s at the house!”


“It’s at the house!!”


“It’s at the house!!!” “It’s at the house!!!”

“W H A T!!!…HOUSE?”


He immediately produced a pen, and clumsily pulled out a white dinner napkin from his jacket pocket, and wrote down: “TECARBIRSR”.

He pronounced it, “Te-car-bir-s(a)r.”

“The Arrow…is there!”

And then he walked off.

Poof! Gone.

I never did forget the old man, and that strange afternoon encounter…or his, “Te-car-bir-s(a)r."

I actually committed it, the “riddle”, to memory.

Now, that was in the late eighties.

And now, 25 years later, I present to you: TECARBIRSR.

It is the house pictured above. I uncovered it again, through recent Arrow research, and had actually, casually, taken some pictures of the Tudor-style, stone house some months ago.

I FINALLY just solved the riddle…when I chanced upon the name of the house in my research material.

So…was the Arrow “that got away” ever here?

Is it still here…perhaps buried, even entombed, somewhere on the palatial grounds?

Was it moved from here, and if so, when? And…to where?

Many questions folks…and absolutely no answers ~

(If you do know…drop me a line)

(I won’t tell you where the house is, or what it once was called, but you’ll know it with certainty, should you find it, by the Four Watchers just above the main door! And if you do find it, as I did, perhaps you better not pry too deeply because there are very likely MORE THAN the Four Watchers, still watching…)

©2006 - 2007 Paul Cardin
©1997 Maclean's
©1980 The Arrow
©1975 CBC There Never Was An Arrow

Friday, February 16, 2007

:::::The LAST Hurrah!..::.:

OCTOBER 2, 2004…British Airways CONCORDE (G-BOAG) comes in for its final TO landing.


Good-Bye Concorde!


I. Was. There.

(The CONCORDE is the most recognizable aircraft in the world and for most people SHE IS the symbol of aviation…her very best ambassador, representing all of aviation's hopes and achievements.)

HOPE For Tomorrow…

A FRIEND OF A FRIEND got stuck at sea, his boat adrift, powerless. As ominous clouds filled the sky indicating a weather change…and not one for the better, he radioed his last known position.

Was this the end?

Hours passed…and with it, so did his hope.

For the longest time, only the sound of the slap of the waves hitting the side of his vessel.

No comfort in that~

Then…what was that…he THOUGHT he heard something?


Then THIS is what he saw.

“I don’t really remember the helicopter at all…all I really saw was "CANADA" and "RESCUE".”

MY COUNTRY had come to save me.

MY COUNTRY…had actually come…to save me.

For a long time he was transfixed by the thought.

NOT REALLY an emotional type…but to this day, he still gets choked up in the recollection~