Thursday, January 8, 2009
The GLOSTER METEOR I (pictured above) was the only Allied jet fighter to attain operational status during WW II.
Produced by the British aircraft company Gloster, this fighter jet entered service with the RAF in the summer of 1944. It actually beat the German Me-262 jet fighter (by a few days) to enter operational status thus becoming the first active fighter-jet of WW II.
Because of its high speed capability (585 mph) the Meteor was immediately employed to counterattack German V-1 Rockets that the Third Reich were launching against Britain on a daily basis.
TWO CANADIAN PILOTS flying Meteors for the RAF scored victories early on in this campaign.
August 16th, 1944 Flying Officer W. McKenzie (616 Squadron) shot down a V-1 that he intercepted while on patrol.
Then, on the very next day, Flying Officer Jack R. Ritch (also of the 616) happened upon two RAF Tempests that were attempting to shoot down another V-1. Soon enough they broke off chase and the V-1 continued on toward London, unchallenged.
Jack then pulled his Meteor fighter-jet right up behind the V-1 at a range of about 150 yards astern. A long machine gun burst was fired. The V-1 finally rolled over, proceeding to fly straight into the ground, and exploded, at just before 7 am, four miles southeast of Maidstone, which is only 38 miles from London, England.
This photo of a Gloster Meteor was taken in 1944 by a Canadian gal, and shows keen public interest in the "marvel" of Britain's FIRST JET.
This photo has had only very minor touch-up. Save that for later.
I own the copyright to this photo. All rights reserved.
Players from the University of Connecticut pictured HOISTING THE CUP…at the NCAA 2009 International Bowl in Toronto.
If you missed this NCAA event on January 3rd in mighty Toronto…well…you can go again next year. It was a great time…Americans get right into their football and you'll see many generations of college fans declaring their loyalties at the game.
If you're depressed or going through an existential crisis…this isn't the event for you! It's football and it's fun!!
Wait for the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival held annually in the town of Elmira, Ontario during the first week of March.
I repeat, the International Bowl was a great time. It was loud. The fans didn't quietly clap, like at a Jay's game…people actually ENJOYED themselves here!
And I noticed quite a few young Americans also exercising their rights by enjoying their ability to drink legally in Ontario, at a much earlier age, than back home.
The legal drinking age in the province of Ontario is 19.
In the province, next door to Ontario, Quebec…the legal drinking age of 19, remember…is only a suggestion!
NCAA International Bowl Final: Buffalo Bulls 20 - Connecticut Huskies 38
…the 2009 International Bowl held at the Rogers Centre in TORONTO on Saturday, January 3rd.
The Huskies STOMPED the Buffalo Bulls before a crowd of 40,184.
International Bowl Final: Buffalo Bulls 20 - Connecticut Huskies 38
And the way U CONN was playing…they coulda' smoked the Buffalo Bills also!
Hey, don't laugh!
Connecticut Running Back DONALD BROWN ran for 261 yards in the game, a career best, and became the 14th major-college player to hit the 2,000+ yard mark in a season.
He's got nothing left to prove at this level.
Don apologized after the game for reneging on his earlier promise to return for his senior year at U Conn. He's moving on to try-out for the NFL.
Hey, NFL tryouts start after…CFL try-outs, Donald…
You know, I'm just sayin'…
Here, U Conn Cheerleader Rachel Rutfield comes over, yet again, to ask me the time.
Posted by Never Was An Arrow II at 7:45 AM
CANADA POST / POSTES CANADA has produced some great aviation stamps like the one above comemmorating 50 years of CIAS (Toronto) airshows in 1999...but still, no stamp, comemorating the glorious achievement of the Arrow.
And so the betrayal continues...
"The Hurricane Mk 4 of Vintage Wings of Canada is painted in the markings of RAF 6 Squadron, “The Flying Tin Openers”, which operated the Hurry in the “tank- busting” and ground attack role.
Many Canadian pilots flew the cannon-equipped tank-buster variant with 6 Sqn. on operations in North Africa."
Vintage Wings of Canada
CANADIAN PILOTS practiced by flying these "Hurris" only 10 or so feet above the ground. The actual Hurricane used was a Mk IID which was never used as a fighter-plane. They were used for low-level bombing raids against tanks, supply trucks, and large artillery guns (88 mm anti-tank gun).
These HURRICANES were feared by the German Africa Korps because their twin 40 mm cannons could penetrate the very thick armour plating found on their medium to heavy desert tanks.
ALITALIA in the air over Toronto on September 1, 2008.
On 29 August 2008 the Italian flagship airline, ALITALIA, filed for bankruptcy protection a day after Zoom made its business departure announcement, for similar economic viability reasons.
The "City of Vancouver's" final indignity…to be stuck in the City of Toronto, actually Mississauga, because of sudden airline insolvency! Pictured here confined to the YYZ FEDEX apron.
Sad…Zoom has left the skies forever…
On 29 August 2008 the Italian flagship airline, ALITALIA filed for bankruptcy protection a day after Zoom made its business departure announcement, for similar economic viability reasons.
ALITALIA is still flying and will likely recover; Zoom won't.
From ZOOM Airlines
"Zoom Airlines sincerely regrets to advise its customers that it has suspended operations with effect from 19:00 hrs on Thursday 28 August 2008. Both Zoom Airlines Inc and Zoom Airlines Ltd, the Canadian and UK airlines, have started administration proceedings in their home countries.
Hugh and John Boyle, the founders of Zoom, said tonight: "We deeply regret the fact that we have been forced to suspend all Zoom operations. It is a tragic day for our passengers and more than 600 staff."
"We are desperately sorry for the inconvenience and disappointment that this will cause passengers and those who have booked flights."
"The suspension of operations is a result of the exceptionally difficult trading conditions which have affected all airlines over the last 12 months. We have worked hard over the last seven years to build up a successful business but have incurred losses in the current year due to the unprecedented increase in the price of aviation fuel and the economic climate. The increase in the price of oil has added around $50 million to our annual operating costs and we could not recover that from passengers who had already booked their flights."
Out Of Pocket?
If your travel arrangements have been made as part of a holiday package originating in the Canada and booked through a holiday company, you may be able to make a claim under the TICO’s Compensation Fund. Please contact TICO at 1-888-451-8426 or (905) 624-6241 or email firstname.lastname@example.org should you have any questions or require further clarification. For information on this, please consult www.tico.on.ca/
If your travel arrangements have been made as part of a holiday package originating in the UK and booked through a holiday company, you may be able to make a claim under the CAA's Air Travel Organiser's Licence scheme. For information on this, please consult the CAA ATOL website at www.atol.org.uk.
Both British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have indicated that they will be offering special fares to customers whose travel plans have been affected by Zoom's suspension of flights. Please visit www.ba.com or www.virgin-atlantic.com for full details.
Things Sure Looked Good
RON, my brother actually hated airplanes.
Bit of an oddball in our family because of that disposition.
"If those damn things (Maritime Command aircraft) weren't landing and taking off day and night..."
But such was life in Greenwood, Nova Scotia in the 50s... at RCAF Station Greenwood.
Here my brother, Ron, and his new American wife Terry, elope, somewhere in Alabama in the late 60s.