TO HISTORICAL REPORT 1963
RCAF STATION YORKTON
1 Jun 63 to 31 Dec 63
RCAF Station Yorkton became a self-accounting unit on 21 Jan 63. At that time all major construction had been completed. The Combined Mess Kitchen and Single Quarters were opened up and the Main Party reported in. During the remainder of 1963 electronic installation, testing and handover has been completed.
Major Function of the Unit
The major function of the unit is that of a long range radar (LRR) and ground-air transmitter-receiver (GATR) facility to the Great Falls NORAD Sector (GFADS) of the 29th NORAD Region.
During the period of this report activities were devoted in the main to the task of becoming a completely operational unit. At the same time all supporting services have become fully manned, and most recreational facilities have now been provided. Every effort has been made during this period to provide tours and briefings to local civilian organizations, in order to provide better correct information as to the existence of the Station.
With the handover of the FST-2 computer the Unit became officially operational on 15 Oct 63. Until that date data was being fed to GFADS, however, it was primarily for test purposes and any down-time was not counted against the Unit. On the 27 Jun 63 soon after the DMCC operation began, an experimental high altitude balloon released from Neepawa, Man. Was successfully tracked by the Unit.
During the month of Jun 63 all available personnel received annual Nuclear Defence Training. An effective trade advancement program was instituted prior to the October Trade exams, the results have been most encouraging. Nine Radar Techs are presently engaged in an 18 week course on the FST-2 Computer. This course is under the direction of Mr. D Trobak of the Burroughes Corporation, with the assistance of Unit personnel.
Repairs to the Fire Pump were completed on 19 Dec 63 which has provided a completely reliable system with remote starting from the Fire Hall. The Power Plant is operating on 2 of the 3 installed jet engines and providing all necessary power for operations and heat for the entire unit. An extension was added to the Supply Section and completed on 9 Sep 63. A heating room was added to the GATR building; this project was completed on 2 Dec 63. This room was required to house furnaces which were originally mounted in the ceilings and found to be unsafe.
Both the Protestant and Roman Catholic Chapels were dedicated in Oct 63, the 22nd and 29th respectively. W/C Rodger Deputy DRA and W/C Bracher SORA (P) ADCHQ officiated at the Protestant Dedication. Bishop NP Gallagher, the new Roman Catholic Bishop to the Armed Forces, officiated at the Roman Catholic Dedication. Accompanying Bishop Gallagher were G/C Davignon DRA (RC) and W/C Poirier SORA (RC) ADCHQ. During the period the first PMQ Council elections were held on 3 Oct 63. Prior to this date an interim Council had been appointed to set up a constitution and arrange for elections.
Unit organization differs from the normal due to the deletion of the CTSO position. Under the SAGE concept, all of the following personnel, CGEO, PAdO, SSupO, SAO and SCEO report directly to the Commanding Officer.
The unit was visited by the following:
During the summer months an intersection softball league was organized with the CE Section winning the championship. The Station was represented in the Yorkton Commercial Fastball league by a team made up of Unit personnel. This team lost out in the semi-finals. Intersection Volleyball was organized in the fall, with Badminton and Basketball available on a casual basis. On 10 Dec 63 the Bowling Alleys were opened and a league has been formed to begin in Jan 64. On 19 Dec 63 a newly formed Unit Hockey Team played it’s first game in the Parkland Hockey League.
The highlight of the year was the observance of Air Force Day on 12 Jul 63 with an "Open House". It was estimated that 3000 persons visited the Unit during the afternoon. During the evening a crowd of 15,000 attended the Golden Hawks display given at the Yorkton airport. During the period a number of organized groups visited the Unit.