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Ronald Frederick "Ron" Connelly
b- Apr 2, 1931 in Port Alberni BC
d- Apr 3, 2011, Langley BC
Ron owned Connelly Dawson Airways Ltd.
and they bought Yukon Flying Services.
Became Great Northern Airways.
He started out as a Bush Pilot.
One article says he started flying
at Sproat Lake on Vancouver Island,
where Slim Knights and
Arthur John "Jack" Moul
had a flying School.
Now we know Ron knew Slim from this contact
Ron also flew for
Associated Air Taxi in Vancouver.
One of the first of 5 owners/shareholders
of Conair Aviation Ltd.
A more complete compilation of his history below
Obituary and Pictures above submitted by
Daughter, RJ Lundquist, with Thanks
She then sent me a copy of an application to the Yukon
Transportation Hall of Fame,
Compiled by an old friend of Ron, Joe Redmond.
"Ron Connelly (1931-2011) was
actively involved in Yukon aviation for over 50 years.
In the mid 1950's he was
a pilot with Pacific Western Airlines, based in Whitehorse.
In 1958 he was a
founding partner of Connelly-Dawson Airways (CDA),
on the purchase of Callison
Flying Services, Dawson City.
In 1960 CDA began air mail service to Old Crow
and acquired DC-3, CF-CPY, for charter flying from Dawson.
his company extended its irregular scheduled service
to include Inuvik and Sachs
In 1965 CDA merged with Range Airways (Calgary)
and purchased Yukon
Flying Service (Whitehorse),
to become Great Northern Airways (GNA).
his share of GNA in 1966 at which time this company
was the largest air charter
company in the Territory,
with bases in Whitehorse, Mayo, Dawson, Ross River and
In 1966 Ron
trained as a helicopter pilot, in Whitehorse,
and in 1967 formed Trans North
Turbo Air (TNTA),
with partners Chuck Hankins, Alex Kapty and Gordon Davis.
was the first Yukon operator of turbine equipment,
with the now well known Jet
TNTA is in its 46th year, presently operating 15 helicopters,
Yukon bases, headquartered in Whitehorse.
Ron served as President of TNTA from
1967 to 2005.
the scope of Ron's other aviation ventures,
he was a founding partner, in 1969,
of Conair Aviation Ltd., of Abbotsford,BC.
In 1984 Conair had the world's
largest fleet of fire fighting aircraft,
with 50 fixed wing and 15 helicopters.
In 1978 Conair bought Frontier Helicopters of Watson Lake.
Ron served as Vice
President of Conair from 1972 to 1994.
Ron Connelly was, for 50 years, a pilot, owner/partner
of both fixed wing and
helicopter companies, in the Yukon.
From his early 20's to his mid 70's,
a hands-on principal in these endeavours.
It is safe to say that no other
equals his Yukon aviation business accomplishments,
in either scope
Thanks RJ for sharing this.
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