AIRCRAFT AT WORK AROUND THE WORLD
Flying For Canada
|Ken Bouchard, as a young
pilot in the 1940s.
When the Second World War broke out, Harry wasted no time enlisting, eventually becoming a flight officer in the Royal Canadian Air Force. Harry was shot down and killed carrying out a night raid over Germany. Ken was only 17 when the news of his brother's death reached home, but it didn't stop him from enlisting in the RCAF, where he served as a bomber navigator.
It wasn't until after the war that he obtained his pilot's license, but he's been flying ever since. The love of aircraft led him to pursue a career as an assembly inspector working on hundreds of CF-100 All Weather jetfighters, and his hard work eventually led to his being assigned to the famous AVRO Arrow.
Bouchard displays a great deal of pride when speaking of the Canadian fighter-interceptor, which he says was "years ahead of its time." Watching the Arrow take off on its first test flight was one of his proudest moments.
"I had worked all night, but I stayed to watch the greatest flying spectacle I have ever seen," he says. That was on March 25, 1958. Less than a year later Prime Minister John Diefenbaker cancelled the project. For Bouchard and the other staff working on the Arrow, it was a.day that would forever be known as "Black Friday."
But those times are far behind him now, and Bouchard is hell-bent on leaving his own small mark on the pages of Canadian flight history. And, he's happy to add, his wife Peggy loved lending a helping hand. "I'm looking forward to flying with Ken in this plane," she says, adding she hopes she'll get to see more of him now the project is complete. "I only got to see him at mealtimes but I never minded. He was doing something he enjoyed. He's always got something on the go."
Roberta Avery is a Midland-based freelance writer.
© CARP NEWS. Reprinted from CARP NEWS, Ontario Edition, June 1997, Cover Story
NOTE: This article represents the viewpoints of the author, and not necessarily those of Zenith Aircraft Company.
© Zenith Aircraft Company