Monday, December 17, 2018

The End of an Era

It's a controversy that dates back to the day when Brian Mulroney was prime minister and a soon to be prime minister, Kim Campbell, Mulroney's defence minister.  At the time, Campbell wanted to replace Canada's then aging Sea King anti-submarine helicopters with a costly European design, the EH-101. When Campbell's brief premiership was ended by Jean Chretien, the Liberals canceled the helicopter contract, leaving the Sea King fleet to soldier on long after their intended retirement date.

As I was sitting in my study just before noon, the house began to shake a little from the unmistakable sound of rotor blades.  There, overhead and really quite low, passed a tight formation of four Sea Kings with a fifth well behind in trail. They headed north and then, several minutes later, passed by again this time heading south.

It turns out this was the farewell fly-past of these venerable CH-124 Sea Kings. They certainly have done yeoman's service with the Canadian navy since 1963. After today it's thought they'll be scrapped for parts.


Willy said...

A picture from your house would have been awesome if not historicalšŸ˜‚

The Mound of Sound said...

Yes, that's what I thought - 10 minutes after they had headed back to Pat Bay. The story of the farewell fly-past was in the morning papers but I didn't stumble across it until the event was over.

55 years in service. That's pretty amazing.

the salamander said...

.. these historic choppers were also Coast Guard SAR
Search and Rescue, non ? On icebreakers etc ?
Not sure why the current ie replacement choppers are single crewed
Will have to look see & catch the new vital statistics
re cost, service hours required etc, lift and two way range
and if there's a co-pilot seat even..