Sergeant Ron Anderson, a Flight Engineer with 435 (Transport and Rescue) Squadron at 17 Wing Winnipeg, was recognized recently for reaching a milestone that few aircrew attain-10,000 flying hours with the Royal Canadian Air Force.
Major-General Pierre St-Amand, Commander 1 Canadian Air Division, presented a 10,000-hour certificate and his coin to Sgt Anderson at a town hall meeting held at 17 Wing on October 23, 2012. During the presentation Lieutenant-Colonel Steve Lamarche, 435 Sqn Commanding Officer, said, “It’s a significant milestone that very few flight engineers or even pilots reach.”
Sgt Anderson joined the Air Reserves in 1978 in Edmonton, Alberta, and worked at 418 Sqn, which was flying Twin Otters. In 1982, he began his flying career by becoming a Tech Crewman, a trade specialty.
In 1990, Sgt Anderson became the first reservist to do the Flight Engineer course and shortly after, he joined the Regular Forces. From 1991 until 1995, he flew in Twin Huey helicopters with 427 Sqn before returning to Twin Otters with 440 Sqn.
Throughout his career, he has moved back and forth between rotary and fixed wing aircraft in Western Canada. He was posted back and forth between 408 Sqn flying Griffons and 435 Sqn flying the CC-130 Hercules 4 times. “There seems to be a bit of a pattern there,” Sgt Anderson says.
“I have 5200 hours just on the Twin Otter,” said Sgt Anderson. “I think I’ve landed at every airfield in the Northwest Territories.”
Some of Sgt Anderson’s career highlights include flying in Somalia in 1993 with in Twin Huey helicopters, flying in Bosnia in 2001 with the Griffon helicopters, and flying in Afghanistan in 2009-2010 with the Griffons. On the CC-130 Hercules he has participated in numerous BOXTOP operations to resupply Canadian Forces Station Alert, flown OPEN SKIES treaty verification flights, is Air to Air Refueling qualified, and is Search and Rescue qualified.
Sgt Anderson has enjoyed his military career. “It’s gotten me all over North America, all over Europe and Africa and even Hawaii,” he says.
“10,000 hours. It’s a big milestone. Not many people reach it,” said Sgt Anderson. “It was nice to receive the Commander’s Coin.”