Air Canada to Donate Douglas DC-9 to Canada Aviation Museum

Air Canada and the Canada Aviation
Museum today announced the donation by Air Canada of a vintage 1960s Douglas
DC-9 aircraft to the national museum`s collection. The aircraft is scheduled
to be delivered to the Ottawa museum in the spring of 2002. Today`s
announcement comes as the airline officially marks the retirement of its DC-9
fleet after almost 36 years of service from coast to coast.

“The Canada Aviation Museum prides itself in charting not only Canada`s
rich aviation heritage but also the important milestones in the history and
technology of flight,” said Anthony Smyth, Director General of the Canada
Aviation Museum. “We appreciate Air Canada`s understanding of the usefulness
and significance of this aircraft which has played an important role in our
civil aviation history and gratefully accept the guardianship of this aircraft
for this and future generations. Undoubtedly, the Museum`s wide audience of
Canadian and international visitors will benefit greatly by seeing the first
twin-jet commercial aircraft operated in Canada.”

“Air Canada is proud to help preserve this important piece of Canadian
aviation history by donating a Douglas DC-9 aircraft to the Canada Aviation
Museum in our nation`s capital,” said Captain Rob Giguere, Air Canada`s
Executive Vice President, Operations, at a ceremony today at the carrier`s
Montréal headquarters to mark the official retirement of the DC-9 aircraft
from Air Canada`s operating fleet. “Today marks an important milestone in the
history of both Air Canada and Canadian aviation.”

“With the retirement of the DC-9 we say farewell to the workhorse of the
Air Canada fleet for almost 36 years. The DC-9 changed the nature of air
transportation in Canada and represented for most Canadians their first
experience of jet travel. It connected Canadians from coast to coast, between
most Canadian cities large and small, with faster, quieter and more reliable
air transportation than ever before,” concluded Captain Giguere who piloted
the DC-9 for almost 10 years, as did his father, Captain René Giguere until
his retirement from Air Canada in 1968.

Air Canada took delivery of its first DC-9 on January 6, 1966, and thus
became the first airline outside the United States to adopt this aircraft
type. It replaced Air Canada`s Vickers Viscount fleet of 44 turbo prop
aircraft which Air Canada had been the first to introduce in North America in
1955. At the height of the DC-9 deployment, Air Canada had as many as 50 DC-9s
serving most of its destinations throughout North America. While in service at
Air Canada, the DC-9 fleet was constantly updated with the latest in
technological enhancements as well as customer service amenities. The fleet
accumulated a total of more than three million hours of service and completed
more than three million landings and takeoffs.


The retirement of Air Canada`s DC-9 fleet is part of the carrier`s on-
going fleet renewal program to improve operating efficiencies and give Air
Canada one of the youngest, most environmentally friendly fleets in the world.
In 2001, 13 DC-9 aircraft were removed from the operating fleet and the
remaining five were removed in January 2002. Air Canada`s last DC-9 flight was
operated from La Guardia to Montréal by Captain Ken Jones and First Officer
Sylvain Boucher on January 18, 2002.