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The finest kind

Perusing some personal photos taken in the 1980s, I came across some related to my residence in Gander and another that has bearing on this letter to the editor of The Beacon.

What started out in 1955 with a crew of guys doing the engineering work

for what would become the Instrument Landing System for Runway-04, culminated in my departure from Air Canada in April of 1986.

It was a great run etched with memories of the late Caleb and Dorothy

Ackerman from Glovertown coming to the front of my check-in line one fall afternoon with a rhubarb pie to be shared with lucky passengers. My offer to Howie Meeker and then Transport Minister Don Jamieson to take my car to St. John's when such a rental was not permitted by the rent-a-car company. A trip that was to last seven days and a cheque from Howie for $40 with the caveat I cash it or he's send it to me in pennies. A chance to chat with Louie Armstrong and his trombone sideman Trummy Young during a seven hour forced stopover.

All the way to my association with Agnes (Nolan) Joy and her miracle workers at the terminal restaurant, who always found a way to get us nourishment when we were up to our ears with delayed passengers. I still count my lucky stars for that association.

That being said, I recall writing a note to The Beacon expressing my

regret concerning the departure of the fine young men and women from Gander, when EPA operated its last flight on Oct. 29, 1988 to move its headquarters to Halifax. I am ingratiated to Dr. Pete Blackie who was kind enough to give me the Canada Post Commemorative Cover for that date. EPA would eventually become part of Canadian Pacific Airlines, who in turn merged with Air Canada.

I mention that because one of the people mentioned in my note to The

Beacon in 1988 was Bill Shugarue.

Just this week I logged-on to the in-house Air Canada website and lo and

behold, one of the six people shown there and recognized for their Art of Excellence is none other than Bill Shugarue. I was surprised, but not surprised. Having connected in Halifax a few times over the years, Bill was always the personable, helping, down-to-earth genuine gentleman he is to this day.

Gander was the loser in 1988, and guys like Bill say it in spades. If he

sees this, I wish he and his family contentment up-along.

P.S. The other guys in the Engineering crew were Bob Windsor, Eg Burton and Jimmy Peckford. The finest kind.


R.O. Kieley


Conception Bay South

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