One of Canada’s most historic Norsemans is CF-GLI. Delivered by Noorduyn to the US Army in February 1944, this UC-64 Norseman served on the US homefront as 43-5374. After its brief Army career, it was retired and sold in the summer of 1945 by the US Reconstruction Finance Corp. (the US equivalent to Canada’s War Assets Disposal Corp.) to Los Angeles based Aero Service, where it flew as NC88719. It’s history there still isn’t known, but in September 1951 it was sold to Queen Charlotte Airlines of Vancouver, thence to Air-Dale of Sault Ste. Marie in 1953 and Lee Cole’s Chapleau Air Services in 1982. Other operators followed until CF-GLI joined Gogal Air Services of Snow Lake, Manitoba in 1994, where it worked steadily in the summer tourist trade until a crash in the bush in June 2010. Old ‘GLI now seemed to be kaput.
In January 2011, however, the bent old Norseman was hauled out in pieces by helicopter and trucked away for safe keeping. In 2015 ‘GLI was sold to a group in the Netherlands (headed by Arno van der Holst) with plans to rebuild it to flying status. For the latest about this important project, check out their Facebook page.
Also, you can read all about CF-GLI’s many adventures in Aviation in Canada: The Noorduyn Norseman, Vol.2.
Recently, Chris Cole sent along this great new photo, above, of CF-GLI. Chris writes: “I attach this picture of CF-GLI that I took one summer at my dad’s business — Sunset View Camp/Chapleau Air Service — on Unegam Lake just south of Chapleau on Hwy 129. I remember going out in a boat, so I could take this picture.”
Cheers and I hope your summer goes well so far … Larry