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War Hero and DH Chief Test Pilot Passes in January — Russell Bannock, RIP

By Ian Brown, Editor, EAA 657159

February 2020 -It is with sadness that we report the passing of Russell Bannock, an aviation legend who not only excelled as a wartime pilot, but also as chief test pilot for de Havilland, introducing the world to the Beaver, Otter, Twin Otter, Caribou, and Buffalo.


After returning home from the Second World War, Russ Bannock joined de Havilland Aircraft Company of Canada as the OEM's chief test pilot and operations manager. Rick Radell Photo

You can read about his phenomenal career in this superbly written obituary in Skies magazine. One sad but fascinating note: He intended to renew his medical and celebrate his 100th birthday by flying a Beaver on floats in Toronto Harbour, as he had done 73 years ago in 1947, but was prevented from doing so by adverse weather. He passed on just 65 days after celebrating his birthday. Our sympathies go out to his friends and family.

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