A FORMATION TO REMEMBER
Retired Captain Jim Guild a pilot on 415 Squadron between 1969 and 1973 recently shared the following story.
On the morning of 14 May 1970, Summerside maintenance informed the Squadron that, for the first time in living memory, all six Arguses/Argi were serviceable. This was an extremely rare occurrence in those days. In a show of strength and operational readiness, the Squadron decided to put together skeleton crews for each of the six aircraft, with a plan to fly a six plane formation to Greenwood, land, taxi past the tower with our Squadron flag flying out the hatch of the lead aircraft and then depart for Summerside. The photo below was taken from the Summerside tower as the Formation taxied out. The Squadron Commander, Wing Commander Johnston was flying the lead aircraft and Jim Guild was in the last a/c, part of Crew 6
On arrival in Greenwood, the formation landed as intended, and taxied past the tower. The Summerside Base Commander, Colonel Roy Sturgess, was on board the lead aircraft, and the Greenwood Base Commander had been summoned to the tower. Apparently they had a few choice words with each other, after which the Formation departed for Summerside.
On departure Runway 26, the Formation did a left hand 270 degree turn and passed directly over the base at low level. It was reported later that The Hon. Allan MacEachen, a Federal Government Minister at the time, was staying in the guest cottage. Apparently, as a result of the noise and vibration from the six aircraft, the large plate glass window in the living room of the cottage fell out on the lawn!
The Formation returned home successfully meeting the objective of giving both the Squadron and CFB Summerside a huge boost in morale.
415 Squadron Association