Kamloops, BC

1964 – Historical Summary – National Archives of Canada

To Station Historical Report
For 1964

Historical Summary
RCAF Station Kamloops
1 Jan 64 to 31 Dec 64


1. One major change was made to the role of the unit during 1964, and the unit assumed greater administrative and logistic responsibility. Its functions in the operational field were expanded as a result of the BUIC concept (para 4); and the unit was made responsible for the administration of nine additional air cadet squadrons in the BC Interior (para 5).


2. The role of 56 Radar Squadron as originally laid down in AFHQ Organization Order 2.52 dated 28 Mar 63 was to:

"(a) collect, discriminate and transmit to a designated SAGE Centre radar data appearing with the area of coverage."

3. Amendment List 3 to the Org Order amended the role of the unit to include:

"(b) when directed, to act as a NORAD Ground Control Intercept Station (NGCI) by assisting the designated NORAD Control Centre (NCC) in controlling weapons and performing limited identification."

The amendment was effective 1 Jan 64, the date that this unit assumed a BUIC (Back Up Intercept Capability) role. Three F/L, one F/O, one Cpl. and six AC Fighter Controller positions were added to the establishment to man BUIC.



4. The unit implemented the BUIC concept of operations and a number of exercises were conducted during the year to exercise the unit in its new role.

Air Cadets

5. RCAF Station Vancouver had heretofore supplied the administrative and logistics support for all Royal Canadian Air Cadet squadrons in British Columbia. With the closing down of Stn Vancouver in Mar 64 these responsibilities were distributed among the remaining Regular Force units in BC.

6. Station Kamloops assumed responsibility for the following squadrons, in addition to #204 Squadron Kamloops.

#217 Squadron


#223 Squadron


#232 Squadron


#243 Squadron


#259 Squadron


#531 Squadron


#561 Squadron


#581 Squadron


#582 Squadron


A F/O Pers/Adm position was added to the establishment for air cadet liaison duties. The incumbent of this position reported for duty 27 Jul 64.

Operation Bird Watch

7. At the request of the National Research Council, and Dr. Gunn of the Canadian Wildlife Service, photographic recording equipment will be installed at this unit to determine the spring flight paths of migratory birds in this area. This scope reading programme is being carried out on behalf of the Committee on Aircraft Engine Bird Strikes, and the RCAF Co-ordinator on this Committee is the Directory of Flight Safety. Its prime purpose is to track and ascertain the flyways of large migratory bird flocks in an attempt to reduce accidents as the result of bird strikes.

Airmen’s Club

8. An extensive programme of renovations was carried out to bring up to RCAF standard and improve the overall décor of the Wet Canteen. The following major changes were made:

  1. the bar area was reduced in size thus enlarging the floor area for entertainment;
  2. a drop ceiling with concealed fluorescent lighting was installed;
  3. new furniture was purchased, and furniture was also received from Station Vancouver when it closed;
  4. two picture windows were installed;
  5. a coloured outdoor scene mural was purchased for one wall; and
  6. a Seeburg record player and a TV set were installed flush in the wall.

9. The renovated Club was renamed the "Alpine Lounge" and was formally opened by the CO at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on 18 Dec.


10. The year 1964 saw the continued re-emphasis of Manual participation in the SAGE System. Twenty-one live exercises plus approximately fifty Mode III routine transitions ensuring the increasing diligence of unit personnel in manual functions. An increasing number of extended "no notice" exercises shows the need for strong actions and firm control of personnel. Towards the end of 1964 the lack of Controllers, in spite of establishment, strained individual loyalties as "days off" and leave became hazardous and uncertain.

11. During April – June, F/Ls Tate and Whyte attended the DMCC course for controllers and were subsequently joined by F/Ls Austin and Cowan giving Kamloops four trained to DMCC standard in the seven established positions.

12. Winter started early with the first snowfall Aug 29. By 8 Sep 3½ inches of snow had fallen at the Upper site, however, the cold spell was short lived and warm Fall weather returned. The omen was not wrong for the cold weather did strike in early Dec with sub zero temperatures persisting. By 15 Dec equivalent still air temperatures of 108 degrees below zero (-40 degrees F. 51 mph wind) were recorded and cold arctic air with high winds (up to 76 mph) continued to the years end.

13. Two major equipment mishaps occurred during the year which degraded the operational capability of the unit for a short period each time. Both incidents are covered in detail in the 4 – Technical portion of this Report. The failure of the FPS-6 Height Finder antenna on 16 Jun (see para 27) resulted in that equipment being off the air for twelve days, one hour land forty-five minutes. While the freeze up of the Height Finder tower on 16 Dec (see para 31) caused a down time of twenty-one hours and fifteen minutes.


Trade Examinations

14. The regular trade examinations were held in Apr and Oct with the Radar Section being the only section with sufficient candidates to warrant a formal lecture programme. The remaining trades conducted self-study under the supervision of the NCOs in their respective sections. Of the 26 airmen who wrote the TEs, 13 passed.

Group 4 Examinations

15. The Group 4 examinations were held in May with all trades conducting courses in self study. Of the 7 airmen who wrote the Group 4 examinations, 3 passed.

Security Force Training

16. The AFP Section conducted courses in Emergency Security Force small arms handling. To date 36 personnel have received this training and the remaining station personnel are programmed for training in the near future.

Search and Rescue

17. One airmen attended the Search and Rescue School at Station Namao and received two weeks training in basic search and rescue.

18. One short course of four days duration was conducted on the station. Five personnel attended.

19. One NCO attended the Summer Bush Survival Course at Station Namao.

Radar Section

20. Two local courses were conducted on the FST2 by Mr. Thiessen of Burroughs. During this training, 13 technicians received instruction, including three from Station Puntzi Mountain.

21. Extensive OJT and UMIP programmes were also carried out during the year by both the Radar and Telecom Sections.

22. Unit UPX-14 courses for four days duration were attended by 12 technical personnel.

23. One Warrant Officer attended the FPS-7 course at the USAF school in Biloxi for three months.


24. Continuous training of operations personnel was carried out including positional examinations, Mode III training exercises, numerous Live Exercises and during the latter part of the year STP Exercises were run simulating Mode III conditions.

25. Several ECCM films supplied by Seattle NORAD Sector were shown to operations and technical personnel. This programme is being continued and several more films are to be shown.



26. The unit had a successful year in SAGE operation into the Seattle Sector.

Problem Areas

27. FPS-6 Height Finder. At approximately 1345 hours on 16 Jun 64 four bolts that secure the reflector axle bearing plate to the yoke arm at the elevation synchro and angle mark unit assembly end came loose and allowed the bearing plate supporting the pivot to drop off its mount and the reflector assembly to rest against the yoke arms. This coupled with the nodding action of the reflector resulted in the reflector assembly being deformed and damaged.

28. One or more of the Marsden self-locking nuts came loose placing additional stress and vibration on the other three nuts resulting in them coming loose and vibrating off. No evidence could be obtained indicating that someone had intentionally loosened one of these nuts.

29. The Board of Inquiry commended Cpl. KI Johansen for his quick thinking and action in immediately disconnecting the power to the antenna thus preventing further damage to the structure.

30. The Board estimated the cost of repairing the reflector at $1,500.00

31. Height Finder Freeze-Up. The extremely cold weather experienced during mid-December proved too much for the heating system in the FPS-6 Tower. The equipment froze up and attempts to procure suitable heaters in the local area were not successful. Station Comox then flew a Herman Nelson heater in by Dakota aircraft. The Herman Nelson thawed out the equipment and it was back on the air after being unserviceable for twenty-one hours and fifteen minutes.

Equipment Changes

32. The TDDL equipment was modified for single line operation in Feb.

33. The TCU/ASTRO installation was completed by unit personnel and tested by Western Electric Co personnel in April. This device provides Sector with an additional ECCM facility.

34. A Data Count meter was installed on the FST2 equipment which is an aid in SAGE data analysis.

35. The unit’s radar training equipment was overhauled in Jun by Northern Electric personnel.

36. Discussions were held throughout the year on the installation of an automatic PBX system. Target date of completion of the installation is now Mar 65.

37. The AN/FPS-6B Height Finder radar was modified to an FPS-507 radar in Aug. This provides a major change in the transmitter portion of the radar.

38. The installation of a mobile UHF/FM communications system was completed in Sep.



39. The MSE Section logged approximately 600,000 miles during the year under review. Most of this mileage was over the most hazardous and treacherous road system of any of the units in the RCAF.

Accident Rate

40. The MSE accident rate was zero per 100,000 miles. Two other ADC units also reported zero accident rates but, as they had both logged a greater mileage than Kamloops, were given precedence over this unit in the overall ADC standing. However, no account of the road hazard factor is considered when compiling these statistics.


41. As a result of its excellent driving record the unit received the ADC Proficiency Award.


42. The following changes to the unit vehicle holdings were made during 1964:

New Vehicles Received

Code H44 – Front End Loader
Code G8 – Fire Truck
Code A5 – CO’s Staff Car
Code A26 – 16 passenger Bus

Vehicles Returned

Code A26 – 16 passenger Bus
Code B55- Truck, Freight, 5-ton
Code J22 – Crash Ambulance



43. Construction engineering was mainly on a routine maintenance basis during 1964. The following projects were completed:


Est. Labour





Cattle Guard






Garbage Can Racks






Steps to Weather Machine






Security Signs






Outlet Plugs FPS20 Tower






Mods to GATR Standby PP






GATR Heating System






Relocated Generators in Power Plant





Diesel Installation

44. Project 121 was raised to relocate two 300 kw Blackstone generators from St. Sylvestre and Beaverbank to Kamloops to replace the then existing Cummins Diesels. The new generators are 300 kw automatic start diesel electric units. The purpose of this installation was to step up the voltage from 120/208 volts to 550 volts.

45. With the installation of this automatic start equipment the unit establishment was reduced by EGSTechs: 1 Sgt., 1 Cpl., 2 ACs, 2 civilians leaving an EGSTech establishment of 1 Cpl., 1 AC and 1 civilian.

Change of Transformers

46. BC Hydro removed the larger type transformers from this unit and replaced with a smaller type capable of meeting this units demand as the larger transformer supplied more power than necessary.



47. No major changes were made to the basic organization of the Station during 1964.

48. Air Cadets. As mentioned in para 5 of this Report, the unit assumed responsibility for the administration and supply of nine more air cadet squadrons in the BC Interior in addition to the No. 204 Kamloops Squadron. The major impact of this expansion of responsibility was felt by the Accounts and Supply Sections which had to take over nine additional inventories, some of which were quite extensive.

49. Ground Environment. Numerous changes were made within this Branch as experience was gained during the year under SAGE operations. The more important ones were:

  1. Technical Services was removed from the jurisdiction of the STelOO, was made directly responsible to the CGEO, and was renamed Tower Orderly Room.
  2. The Radar Section was broken down into Maintenance and Servicing with a WO in charge of each section responsible directly to the SRadO.
  3. The Message Centre was moved to the Lower Area, and, due to its geographical location was made the responsibility of the CAdO.

50. Organization Chart. A chart, depicting station organization down to the Section level, follows:

Organization Chart


51. The following is a list of persons who visited or inspected the unit during 1964. Details of their visits will be found in the Monthly Record of Activities included as Appendix "B" to this Historical Report.

13 Jan

Manpower Standards team headed by F/L WO Klatt

16 Jan

F/L CG Maxwell, ADC/SOGT

24 Jan

Lt. RN Davidson, Canadian Postal Corps

10 Feb

S/Ls DB Gunn and L Foster, AFHQ Ottawa

28 Feb

G/C EG Ireland, Station Comox; G/C RS Turnbull, Seattle Sector; W/C WS Hynds, Station Beaverlodge; W/C RD Sloat, Station Baldy Hughes; W/C FD Avent, Station Puntzi Mountain; and the Hon. E Davie Fulton

29 Feb

ADC HQ CE Inspection headed by S/L ER Biddiscombe

1 Apr

A/V/M MD Lister, Hon. E. Davie Fulton, G/C DG Malloy and Mayors Day and Chilton

6 Apr

F/L KG Leavitt and F/O A Theriault, ADC/SOAF

6 Apr


20 Apr

F/L GRO Wonnacott, ADC/SOPA

23 Apr

Mr. R Reid, Western Electric Co.

4 May

F/L DH Waitt and WO2 D Bevan-Pritchard, AMC HQ

4 May

Radar Evaluation Team headed by S/L MJ Hoffert

18 May


15 Jun

Captain Kurris, USAF

24 Jun

A/V/M MM Hendrick, AOC ADC, and party

30 Jun

Dr. GJ Odgers, Dominion Observatory, Ottawa

13 Jul

WO1 EH Jerrett, ADC/SOCE

28 Jul

Major General William E. Elder, Air Commodore GH Elms, G/C RS Turnbull and Col. CL Paul, Seattle NORAD Sector

7 Aug


12 Aug

S/L WE Campbell, Legal Officer

14 Aug


24 Aug

G/C RS Turnbull and Col. WR Nevitt, Seattle Sector

21 Sep

W/C CLV Gervais and F/L M Ryneski, ADC/SESO

28 Sep

F/Ls AL Gunn and CE Taylor, ADC EDP Test Team

14 Oct

2/Lt. RA Beardsley, Seattle Sector

3 Dec

W/Cs JRG Poirier and JN Bracher, ADC Chaplains

15 Dec

W/Cs JND Pudney and WJ Argue, ADC SOAF and SOPA respectively



52. A varied but limited recreation programme was initiated in 1964, the emphasis swung from station teams, and mass participation was stressed. The breakdown following gives a brief outline of the activities taking place.


53. Local League. A team from this unit entered in the Kamloops Senior Men’s Softball League. The station representatives finished last and out of the playoffs.

54. RCAF Zone Playdowns. RCAF Station Kamloops was eliminated in the BC playdowns which they hosted.

55. Station Tournament. The Annual Station Softball Tournament had 8 teams playing on the station softball diamond in Jun of 64. The event proved a success and it will continue this year.


56. Zone Playdowns. Sgt. Crawford skipped a rink that included F/L AW Stewart, Cpl. JR Murray and LAC JC Perkins, which represented the station at the BC playdowns. The rink finished with 2 wins in 5 starts.

57. Station Bonspiel. The "Tin Can" Bonspiel was again held using jam tins filled with cement at a nearby slough (Pondalolo). Approximately 50 people participated in this annual event which proved successful for the second year.


58. This unit was represented in the Tri-Service Badminton playoffs by W/C DE Biden, LAC CMN Lopes and LAC H Methot. W/C Biden finished second in the singles while our doubles pair were eliminated early in play.


59. A Golf Day was held at the local golf course and approximately 40 golfers took part. Prizes were awarded to at least 8 golfers, primarily the beginners of which there were 25.


60. Local League. The station basketball team played in the Senior Men’s League and finished in second place on the seasons play. They were narrowly beaten in the finals by Franklins.

61. Tri-Service. A team from Kamloops took part in the Tri-Service Basketball competition but did not qualify for the semi-finals.


62. House League. A noon-hour house league started in late 1964 and appears to have caught on. Better things are expected in this sport in the future.

Flag Football

63. House League. Three Flag Football games were played and interest in the game is high.

Grave Cup Football

64. A Canadian Football game was held this year to simulate the Canadian Grey Cup. Equipment was borrowed from the local high school and players were chosen from unit personnel coming from the East or West. A parade was staged and although only three floats were entered, their quality was excellent. A good crowd was on hand and the game itself was of a good standard. The East won the game 14 – 10. This event is planned on an annual basis and it should be bigger next year.


65. Two house league soccer games were played this year with an eye to creating an interesting in this good conditioning sport.

Hare and Hound Chase

66. This novelty sport with about 24 men involved, was tried for the first time this summer for a change of pace, and to try to involve personnel who would normally be spectators. It was a moderate success.

Fishing Derby

67. A Fishing Derby was held for the dependents of Service and civilian personnel. Prizes were awarded to the biggest fish and smallest fish caught, and the smallest fisherman. The youngest participant was 9 months old. Approximately 60 personnel took part.


68. Unit administration was on a routine basis throughout the year.

69. The Personnel Administrative Officer position was renamed Chief Administrative Officer, as the position reflected the duties of a CAdO much more than those of a PAdO.

70. Command staff officers invariably reported satisfactory standards of administration within the sections of the station for which they were responsible. The prime exception was the Mess Hall where the Staff Officer Food Services reported a deterioration in housekeeping standards.

71. The Institutes Assets Allocation Committee gave the unit a grant of $2,560.00 towards the construction of a tennis court. Construction, chiefly on a self-help basis, will commence in the Spring.


72. This unit continued to use the facilities of the Irving Clinic in Kamloops for routine medicals and sick parades, while the Medical Inspection Room on the unit provided routine medical care and medical administration. Cases requiring hospital care or consultation by military medical officers were referred to No.11 RCAMC Detach, Vancouver, or to HMCS "Naden" in Esquimalt. Temporary duty expenses for referrals to Vancouver and Naden amounted to $668.00 during the year. Other medical expenditures were:

Expenses paid under QR(Air) 34.07 – X-rays, Lab., Glasses, ECGs, Hospitalization - $2,217.31

Consultants paid under QR(Air) 210.61(4) – $3, 587.15

Drugs paid under LPO Primary in accordance with CFMS 294 - $310.64