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AC745 - C-GIPW
This B737-200 is the last known aircraft in Pacific Western Airlines colours.  It was purchased new from Boeing and for many years flew for the airlines, then Canadian Airlines then Air Canada.  The aircraft was donated to the Alberta Aviation Museum by Air Canada and currently sits in near flying condition at Villeneuve Airport, AB. Here is the story of how it got there.


Feb 11, 2014 - Update ON A/C 745 (From T. Champion)
Our B737 sits silent and cold on the ramp at Villeneuve Airport, west of Edmonton.  There is a hangar building process going on now however this aircraft may need to endure 2 to 3 more years before an inside home is ready. This is one resilient aircraft and sitting parked is much better than the alternative.


Dec 9, 2013 - An Update on the last flight of A/C 745. 
After the Nov 29, 2013 event when  A/C 745 - a former PWA B737-200 that took flight one last time;  the  e-mails that ensued were of congratulations, pride, thanks, nostalgia and many with a lump in the throat were clearly emotional.  There are a lot of people who care. One member described it as:  ... it brought tears to my eyes, and flooded my soul with so many wonderful memories."  These emotions were also captured in the videos of those interviewed as the event unfolded. .  Here is another quote - " I was at this loving occasion and was taken to the hangar side by Tom Hendricks because of my help over the year. It brought back a lot of good feelings but also remembering kids fighting over the controls by make believe young pilots and the strength of Boeing construction. Both pilots were from the new Canadian North so didn't recognize them. They were overheard to say it handled better than some of their regular 737,s. It was enjoyable to see the old friend leap in the air and snub its nose at those who tried to destroy her...
Again, its a job well done and probably something that will never happen again.  Yes the B737 will survive but the Muni could not be saved. 
Here is a sentiment sent by C. Ettinger.
Been checking the website every week to see what's been going on with Tail 745, I have to say I'm kind of sad to see her leaving the Muni...don't get me wrong I'm also glad she will still be preserved, but still.. Do you know if the rest of the museum will stay the same or will be forced to shut down. You know, I still can't believe the muni will be gone.. its really sad that airport was such a big part of Edmonton's history, plus all the company's there like Esso and the Edmonton Flying Club...It's crazy...Im really glad you guys are keeping us informed about what's going on, even though I was never an employee of PWA, The airline will always be remembered by me, I even have quite a bit PWA memorabilia from old ticket jackets to timetables from the 70's. Thank you for keeping the website alive as I'm probably one of your biggest fans!! Thanks again! All my best to tail 745...


Watch the Global News Helicopter Raw Video of the 13 minute trip


Dec 9, 2013 Sequence Photos of the A/C 745 Ferry to Villeneuve - Copyright Lech Lebiedowski

 

Nov 29, 2013 - AC 745 takes flight
Right on schedule at 2 PM MST today, A/C 745 C-GIPW departed YXD and landed 13 minutes later at its new home at Edmonton Villeneuve Airport located NW of the City of Edmonton.    It has been over 26 years since the airline ceased to operate under the PW banner and after 8 Ĺ years that A/C 745 was placed on display as a museum piece our airplane flies once more. It is a proud moment that validates all of the former PW employees. Kudos and congrats to the people at the Alberta Aviation Museum and their Executive Director Tom Hinderks plus Capt T. Champion, Capt R. Reaville, Capt R. Schoults, AMEís Dale Hyrve and Rick Kuzyk, Canadian North and all their support plus the flight crew and technical specialists,  There are many others to be thanked also. It was a great day for Pacific Western Airlines.

Here are some media links:

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/edmonton/Boeing+perfect+flight+from+City+Centre+Airport+home/9230312/story.html
http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/Canada/Edmonton/ID/2421333683/
http://www.cbc.ca/edmonton/news/
http://globalnews.ca/video/1000151/final-flight
http://globalnews.ca/video/999777/raw-video-737-flies-from-city-centre-to-villeneuve
http://globalnews.ca/video/1000158/raw-video-from-the-cockpit-of-boeing-737
http://globalnews.ca/news/997857/its-down-to-crunch-time-to-move-737-from-city-centre-airport/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERUbcaaMdsE

http://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/video?playlistId=1.1567913


On Final at Villeneuve Airport

Parked

New Home

The story of the fate of A/C 745 goes way back to a decision by the City of Edmonton to close the downtown airport.  Six months earlier, a study of the land use plan boundaries had left space for the museum but there was no parking for the B737.  Months of discussions and planning evolved into a plan that would see her flown out of the "Muni" to Villeneuve.  The Alberta Aviation Museum, many PWA alumni, Canadian North management, flight crew and others worked around the clock to have the A/C inspected, checked and recertified so it could fly again. And fly it did! -Click the links above to hear the engines roar one last time. Read some of the time line below

Nov 28, 2013 - AC 745 will take flight
We have received news that A/C 745 will fly from the Edmonton Muni to Villeneuve at around 2 PM on Friday Nov 29. Very exciting and good news.  Pacific Western Airlines flies once again.  Our grateful thanks to all involved in this project.

Nov 27, 2013 - MOT conditional approval for the planned move of A/C 745 has been received.   There is now 2 or 3 days and possibly more time to complete the checks and related requirements.  This one will go right down to the wire. On Nov 23, 2013 - AC 745 was moved to Building 39 (old PWA hangar) to thaw out and drip dry plus took the Kelly D to the hangar. B737 AME and Canadian North are working hard at getting this work done.


Nov 20, 2013 - Update on Future of A/C 745
I had previously advised that the target date for moving the 737 from City Centre Airport to Villeneuve Airport was 23 November 2013. As of tonight the probability of that target date being met is extremely low. Moving the aircraft remains the only viable option to saving this Edmonton historic service aircraft.  Itís beyond anything the Museum has under its control or influence. As the City Centre runway will close on 30 November, everything that can be done is/has been done on our side.   Iíll advise further as the world unfolds. 
From the Alberta Aviation Museum


Nov 14, 2013 - Update on The Closure of the Muni and the Future of A/C 745
The possibility of ferrying 745 to Villeneuve is very much up in the air, so to speak.  The runway will close at civil twilight on November 30th. The Air Museum is working on a day long program for the 30th - More info to follow. It seems fairly certain that we will have a second location at Villeneuve as Edmonton Airports has offered a 50-year lease on 13 acres there.  The MOT hangar on the east side of XD (that once belonged to Pocklington) is a 21,000 sq ft metal structure that must be removed by March 30th. They have offered it to us on the basis that they will have it dismantled and delivered to Villeneuve at their cost and we would be responsible for re-assembling it.  The museum is not moving the present operation to Villeneuve. We have 4 years on the lease and hope to sign a feasible extension for 20 years or so. The operation at Villeneuve would be controlled by our organization but would be operated as the Edmonton Flying Heritage Association.


Oct 12, 2013 - Edmonton Airport Closure Update
On Sat Oct 12, 2013, the Alberta Aviation Museum at the Edmonton City Centre Airport arranged a fly-in rally with the theme being the closure of the downtown airport which is scheduled for later this year. Several hundred attended along with the press media. A cool and sometimes sunny day brought together approx 25 former PWA staffers. The B737 looks great and has been kept in near running condition by the Museum and retired AME's from the airline. An engine run up was done on the aircraft 2 weeks ago. The APU runs regularly.
The political side of the airport closure has seen talks that might foresee our B737 taken out of Edmonton but recent information suggestions some favourable arrangements might be made to allow it all to stay. The best answer we can hope for is to preserve the memory of the airline and the people who worked for PWA. Many younger visitors asked "who is Pacific Western" as they read the bright red letters on the fuselage. For them it is a new topic. Our airline stopped flying 26 1/2 years ago.
 


Resolve Legal Group


CHED news radio and several others covered the event.  You can read the article and more pictures here. 


Oct 10, 2013 - From C. Ettinger - This  thought I am sure is shared by many
Just wanted to say I was really saddened to hear that Edmonton will be shutting down the Edmonton Municipal/City Center Airport (CYXD). My first memories of YXD was when I was around 2-3 years old when my father and I flew a Cessna 172 over the city. Then when I was 4 we flew on a PWA 737 to YYC - the Airbus service, I was so excited. I remember the stewardess handing me candy while waiting for the rest of the passengers were boarding. My family moved to Calgary when I was 5 and I didn't return until my teens to see the old airport. Back then Canadian Airlines/Canadian Regional and Air BC was serving City Center. in my late 20's I returned again only to see the terminal closed and only light traffic now flying in and out. It's a part of Edmonton history and to see it close is disappointing. Also to hear that the ex PWA 737 at the museum will be leaving is a big blow as well. I really believe it should stay as it was a big part of the airport and for Pacific Western. I hope that people will notice these events and possibly post old photos of YXD so that we will always remember what was there in the heart of Edmonton. Good Bye Muni...


Jan 2010
Chris Ettinger sent this update photos from YXD where AC745 resides and she still looks good.  

 


Feb 2005 
Air Canada donated a Boeing 737-200 aircraft registration C-GIPW to the Alberta  Aviation Museum.  Air Canada also painted the aircraft in 1970 Pacific Western Airlines colors.   The Edmonton aviation people and the PWA Alumni are extremely grateful for the thoughtfulness of Air Canada.  Please visit the Air Museum located at the City Centre Airport, Edmonton where this aircraft is now proudly on display and is also used as a technical trainer for aircraft maintenance students. 

AC745 was re-painted in the 1970 paint scheme and after the rudder had been painted the aircraft will no longer be certified for flight.  Here are a few pictures of that memorable day.

Capt T. Champion (ret) presided at the Ceremony upon the arrival of A/C 745 at the Alberta Aviation Museum - YXD