Air Canada Celebrates 80th With Vintage Lockheed Flight
In honour of Air Canada's 80th anniversary, the airline's Lockheed 10A vintage aircraft has taken flight and making stops at airports across Canada.
On 1SEP, 1937, Air Canada's forerunner, Trans Canada Air Lines (TCA) launched its first commercial passenger flight; a fifty-minute trip from Vancouver to Seattle. TCA had acquired the route plus two Lockheed L‐10A aircraft from Canadian Airways.
At that time TCA also bought three additional Lockheed L‐10A aircraft, brand new, from the Lockheed factory for $73,000 each. These aircraft were dubbed the "Three Sisters" and carried the registrations CF‐TCA, CF‐TCB, and CF‐TCC. The first aircraft, CF‐TCA can now be found in the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum in Ottawa. CF‐TCC is the silver aircraft now travelling across Canada and is only one of two Lockheed L‐10A Electra aircraft flying in the world.
After being operated by TCA from 1937 to 1939, CF‐TCC was sold to the Canadian Government and operated by the RCAF as part of the War Effort during World War II. During the next 40 years, the aircraft was sold several times to various private corporations and individuals. In 1975, a retired Air Canada employee recognized the faded registration marks on the aircraft while attending an air show in Texas.
Air Canada kept track of the aircraft and bought it back in 1983, restored it, and flew it during Air Canada's 50th Anniversary celebrations in 1986.
Since 1986, the aircraft has been maintained in flying condition. Air Canadaemployee and retiree volunteers from Air Canada Maintenance and Flight Operations have put thousands of hours of personal time into keeping CF‐TCC flying.