In a moving ceremony that took place at the Canada Science and Technology Museum on Nov. 21, 2012 in Ottawa, J.A.D. McCurdy, Canada's first pilot and the first man to fly in Canada, was inducted into the prestigious Canadian Science and Engineering Hall of Fame.
Mr. McCurdy graduated from the University of Toronto in 1906 in mechanical engineering where he was the youngest student to be admitted to the university.
Capping a brilliant career in aviation, Mr. McCurdy was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia from 1947-1952. Known as one of the principal fathers of Canadian aviation when he died on June 25, 1961, in Montreal, Que., he was the world's oldest living pilot.
Mr. McCurdy was buried in his birthplace, Baddeck, N.S., with full military honours facing the waters of Bras d'Or Lake from where he made his historic flight in The Silver Dart on February 23, 1909.
Gerald Haddon, honorary colonel of the Canadian Forces School of Aerospace Technology and Engineering at 16 Wing Borden, Ont., representing his grandfather, and accompanied by his wife Amanda, was presented with a piece of handmade crystal and a proclamation from Prime Minister Stephen Harper outlining some of Mr. McCurdy's aviation firsts.
“That Canada is further honouring J. A. D. McCurdy's immense aeronautical contribution, thereby consolidating his place in history as one of the principal architects of Canadian aviation, is very gratifying,” said HCol Haddon.
“To represent my grandfather on this unique occasion of his induction was a rare honour of which I am immensely proud.”