Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 55 > Page 77 - Bill MacRitchie and Early Flight

Page 77 - Bill MacRitchie and Early Flight

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1990/8/1 (166 reads)

tension wires. If you had a nice little breeze blowing, you could make it very easily. But if you didn't, you wanted to be very care? ful, because you were flying in min? imal conditions. And you had to be good to survive--and careful. (The Cape Breton Flying Club) leased the farm from (Dan MacMillan). Also, fortunately, he had a great big barn. And he had no animals, or he t using the barn, and so we converted it into a hangar. (Was he some one who had a particular interest in fly ing, himself?) No, not necessarily. He was a very community-minded person, a very generous type of person. (Now, no plane had yet flown to Cape Breton.) No. Early in June or July--I for? get the exact date--there was a man from North Sydney who was quite wealthy and was living in California. And he bought a Buhl Air Sedan, and hired a pilot by the name of Dorrell, from California, to fly from there to Cape Breton, and land at the field. And that was the very first plane to fly out of the field. And the day that they--of course, they had a large crowd-- everybody came out--there must have been 8 or 10 thousand people came out to see the airplane and the strange people who were flying it and whatnot! He took somebody up with him. And he did a loop. And the fabric on the under part of the airplane ripped loose and wrapped up around, pret? ty near went over his flying controls. And so that--he brought it down--everybody was concerned that he wasn't going to make it. But he did get it down. We got two aircraft from Ottawa after that. They were Avro Avians--that's French for "flying," or for "flight." They were taken down and--I forget whether we assem? bled them, now, or they flew them in. But they were the first two aircraft to be used by the flying club. A fellow by the name of Charlie Roy, former Royal Flying And that, of course, stopped the flying--until our air? craft arrived from Ottawa. I Jlcadian] de cheticamp Ltee. 'JHeats [ Hand Hooked [virgin Wool Products Chowders & Fish Dishes Meat Pies Take-Out Orders Available May 21-October 15 May 1st - October 15th • 224-2170 • ' Open Every Day to Welcome You The View at the Heart of Your Great Cape Breton Visit! Kelly's View Motel East of Boularderie Centre 3/4 mile from Seal Island Bridge Cape Breton's Newest Motel at Affordable Rates ( Modem Motel Units featuring Full Baths and Colour TV ) Phone 674-2473 Your Hosts: Billie & Joe Smolenaars RESTAURANT ADJACENT -- Overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes and Kelly's Mountain ~
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