Friday, February 28, 2014
A-26 Tankers in Canada: Air Spray's A-26 fleet in 1994 (part 12 of 13)
I'd like to thank a friend of mine who told about a great article written by W.M. "Turbo Tarlingin 1994, called Invaders from Red Deer. Yes, as you might have guessed, the article is about Air Spray's A-26 Tankers in 1994. Turbo retired from the Canadian Air Force when he reached mandatory retirement age in 1982 with 11,645 flying hours in 50 different types of aircraft (go here for info on Turbo's flying time). After he retired he spent 17 seasons flying for Air Spray in Alberta where he flew the Douglas A-26. Turbo has a webpage with some articles, photo galleries and other information.
What I like about Invaders from Red Deer is that Turbo paints a portrait of a moment in time -- 1994 -- in Red Deer Alberta. After taking you through the history of Red Deer Industrial Airport, formerly RCAF Station Penfield. He then brings you up to 1994 where he introduces you to Air Spray's fleet that included 18 Douglas A-26 Invaders. He walks you through winter maintenance of Air Spray's aircraft, pilot refresher training, history and terminology of the A-26, walk around the A-26 outside and inside, flying the A-26 tanker, firefighting, and a photo gallery.
The article is long, and well worth reading. I especially enjoyed Turbo's descriptions of flying the A-26. I felt like I was in the cockpit with him, as a quiet observer taking it all in. So, buckle up and enjoy the ride as you read Invaders from Red Deer.Note: I wrote an article about Air Spray on February 10 where I wrote about a fire in one of Air Spray's hangers in 2000 that destroyed some A-26 tankers. The last year that Air Spray flew A-26 tankers was in 2004. Two photos of Air Spray A-26's may be found here and I shared some videos of Air Spray's A-26 tankers by MrFlyerboy101 on Feb. 17, Feb. 19, Feb. 21, and Feb. 26.