British Columbia, Canada
 Aircraft Companies,
 and Airplanes
ca: 1920's to 2012

Site Index

Aircraft Section Home Page

Airline Companies
Queen Charlotte Airlines
Associated Air Taxi
Conair Aviation Ltd.
BC Air Lines Ltd.

BC Airways Ltd.
Pacific Western Airlines Ltd.
Trans Provincial Airlines Ltd.

Western Straits Air
Westinghouse Airways
Air Caledonia
Canadian Pacific Airlines
Pacific Airways Ltd.

Helicopter Companies
Okanagan Helicopters Ltd.

Transwest Helicopters (1965) Ltd.
Vancouver Island Helicopters
Northern Mountain Helicopters
Quantum Helicopters Ltd.

Aircraft Repair Shops
Associated Aero Services

Aircraft Sales Company
Vancouver Aircraft Sales Ltd.

Airport-Seaplane Bases
Patricia Bay, Catalina Graveyard

Sea Island

Pilots - Owners Bios
Herman Joseph "Slim" Knights
Robert Benjamin "Bob" Gayer
Arthur John "Jack" Moul
Ashton James Ward "Jim" Spilsbury
Ronald F. "Ron" Connelly
Leslie George "Les" Kerr
Francis Russell "Russ" Baker
John Francis "Jack" McMahon
Edward Percy Hector Wells
William Frederick "Bill" Waddington

BA Concord and RAF Red Arrows
May 1985, taken from QE II

Bristol Type 170 Freighter
First Around the World Flight

Corporate Jets
BC Tel-Telus

External Links
(Note- NOT my sites)
Ext links


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John Francis "Jack" McMahon
b- Aug 3, 1914 in Edmonton, AB.
d- Nov 21, 2008, Lions Gate Hospital, Vancouver BC.

Married Patricia McMahon, nee Cooney, May 21, 1945
at Our Lady Immaculate RC Church, Limehouse, London, UK.

They had 2 sons, 2 daughters.

Jack was the son of Frank and Rose McMahon.
They had 2 sons and a daughter.
Jack McMahon siblings:
Thomas "Tom" McMahon
Rosemarie Burton, nee McMahon

Father- Frank McMahon outside house
 on 116 Ave in Edmonton

Father- Frank McMahon, 4th from the right
with an Orchestra in Edmonton, ca 1910

Jack McMahon at Edmonton, ca1917?

RCAF pictures of Jack McMahon


Crew Pictures from Jack's personal Autobiography

Cadet Ball, at Saanchin Agricultural Hall
Friday Mar 14, 1941
Jack McMahon in the middle

Jack's story of the photo below

Some of Jack McMahon's crew from Squadron 425

Memorial for lost aircrew at Tholthorpe

Aircrew at Tholthorpe


Jack McMahon Bio

Jack joined RCAF in 1937
Member of the Alouette Squadron 425.
He was stationed in England where he met and married Patricia
Following the war Jack returned to Canada
eventually settling in Vancouver BC.

He spent a lifetime career in the Aviation field.
He extended his passion for aviation and learned to fly Helicopters.

He established Transwest Helicopters in Burnaby BC. in 1965.
Tim McAvoy took the company over around 1985,
and had until his death around 2001.
 Transwest was sold by Tim McAvoy's wife to a European buyer,
and is still in operation at the Chilliwack airport.

After a distinguished flying career,
Jack worked as a helicopter broker until 2006.

I had a phone call from Jack's son, Denis "Denny" McMahon,
who contributed the pictures above,
and the following information about his father.

"As a youth he rode the rods across Canada,
 and worked in a camp clearing land in the 1930's. 
He joined the RCAF in 1937 and was posted to
 the Queen Charlotte Islands, Jericho, and McLeod AB.
before he went overseas in 1944.
 He trained at Dishforth Yorkshire,
and then was posted to Tholthorpe airbase,
 where he was made a pilot of a Halifax bomber.
He was nicknamed the 'old man' by his much younger crew."

"After the war Dad returned to Canada
 and moved out to Vancouver in 1947. 
 It was just after this time, around 1951, that he became involved
 in the early aviation business at the South Terminal Vancouver Airport,
 and first worked for
Bob Gayer , at Associated Air Taxi in 1952.
 He went on to form his own company named
Vancouver Aircraft Sales Ltd.
 and this later changed to Western Airmotive
 It was at this time in the mid fifties
that Denny McCartney worked for my Dad."

"My father knew all the people on your website very well
and I recall meeting a few of them when I was young."

Below directly from Jack's Autobiography:

"After this time I joined Can Arc Helicopters as Operations Manager,
and after retiring from the business I became a helicopter broker,
and founded a company by the name of "World Wide Heli (Services)" (in 1985)
that I operated quite successfully from my home for many years. "
the company served the Aircraft Industry as a broker,
and derived its revenue  by arranging the sale
 for various aircraft companies,
of any equipment which may be surplus to their requirement,
or on the other hand find aircraft that may be required to
fulfill a possible contract.
He charged 2% commission for this service.

Jack in his basement office, Mar 3, 1971

He describes in his bio, he worked for Associated Air Taxi,
Western Air Motive Charter and Maintenance Co., Incorporated 1952,
both based at the South Terminal in Vancouver.

In the 1950's he made trips to Wichita Kansas
where the Cessna factory was located.
He sold Cessna until the late 1950's
until he also became interested in the Mooney Aircraft,
made in Kerrville Texas.

He sold Western Air Motive Charter in 1963,
and became a mutual funds salesman for a short time.
In 1964 he bought the controlling interests
of an inactive Calgary Aviation company
and moved the business to the West Coast
keeping the name Transwest Helicopters
because of the advertising value.

Jack McMahon on wing
in front of a Flying Service hangar

Jack McMahon
pilot of a fixed wing airplane

Jack McMahon in Pilot's seat
of a "Marwell" Cessna 180
Marwell was a Construction Co.
in Vancouver, (assume this Co's plane)

Jack McMahon
beside "Marwell" Cessna 180

Jack at Vernon Airport
This was one of his earlier charter trips.
flying his friend Joe Whitehead
to the Municipal Engineers
10th annual convention


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Page created by Doug Gent
Created Apr 25, 2012
Revised Mar 16, 2014

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