A “Great player” in the Canadian aviation arena.
André O. Dumas became interested very young in aviation, attending the arrival of the dirigible R-100 to Saint Hubert in 1930 while he was only 7 years old. At the age of 13, he made his first flight at Cartierville, accepting afterward any odd jobs at the airport that would allow him to stay in touch with the aviation environment. During the Second World War, Dumas enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force, obtaining in 1943 his pilot’s wings. Transferred to the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm, he flew Fireflys and Seafires aboard the aircraft carrier HMS Battler. After the war, Dumas became a flight instructor at the Montreal Flying Club. He quickly became known as an ardent promoter of aviation, particularly with the young, forming an aviation committee within the Young Chamber of Commerce and being involved during more than 50 years in the Air Cadet League. In 1980, he was elected National President of the Air Cadet League of Canada and in 1995 received the Medal of Honour, the highest distinction of the movement.
After the war, Dumas became a flight instructor at the Montreal Flying Club.
During the Korean war, Dumas rejoined the service as Commanding Officer of No. 2453 Radar Squadron in Trois-Rivières. He was later Aide-de-Camp of the Governor-General of Canada and Honorary Colonel of 438 Squadron in Saint-Hubert. Dumas founded in 1954 the Aero Club of Trois-Rivières and chaired the committee leading to the creation of the new airport in 1961. Working within the RCFCA (today Aero Club Canada), he became, in 1963, its representative in Europe with the prestigious FAI (Fédération aéronautique internationale). These activities peaked with his election in 1967 as National President of the RCFCA, President of the FAI in 1972 and his appointment in 1987 as FAI delegate within the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). Having joined Transport Canada in 1968, he became Regional Director in 1976 of civil aviation for the region of Quebec, post which he held until his retirement in 1987. Among the numerous honours that André O. Dumas received, let us count the prestigious trophy Trans-Canada / McKee in 1998.
1998: Trans-Canada / McKee trophy.