Kingdom Air DC-3 to mark Edmonton’s role in Northwest Staging Route
The Alberta Aviation Museum and Edmonton Airports will welcome a group of pilots next Tuesday April 28 who are flying a vintage World War II transport plane to commemorate a little known, but important, period in this city’s history.
Kingdom Air Corps will bring its 71-year-old DC-3 to the Villeneuve Airport, just northwest of Edmonton. The event, comes just days before 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, which marked the end of the Second World War.
During that war, Edmonton played host to thousands of United States aircrews who took part in a hazardous operation to move American-made military planes to Russia. The route took them into northern Alberta, British Columbia and the Yukon, over routes pioneered by the early bush pilots. The final destination was Fairbanks, Alaska, where Russian pilots would pick up the aircraft and ferry them to the Eastern Front. Almost eight thousand warplanes made the trip, many in the dead of winter.
Kingdom Air Corps uses its aircraft to do missionary work in remote parts of Alaska and eastern Russia. Its In Remembrance trip will stop at several of the airfields used during the war, including the Yukon communities of Watson Lake, and Whitehorse.