Pilote and instructor
The Scholefield brothers were born in England but emigrated to Canada in 1926. The older, Jack, entered aviation in the late 1930’s, earning his pilot’s license at the Curtiss-Reid Flying School in Cartierville. During WWII, he served as instructor in Saint-Jean and Borden (under the command of Adélard Raymond). Younger brothers Robert and Don followed in the Air Force and the Navy. Robert earned his wings in 1944. With war ending, his transfert to the H.M.S. Seaborn aircraft carrier in April 1945 was cancelled. In 1946, the three brothers founded, in Cartierville, Laurentide Aviation (then called Laurentide Flying School). Not only a flying school, the company started selling aircraft, selling in the first year three Aeroncas and four Cessnas. Becoming Cessna’s distributor for Eastern Canada, Laurentide Aviation maintained for many years an impressive annual sales record of more than 50 planes. Jack Scholefield was also active with COPA and ATAC (Air Transport Association of Canada). In 1959, he headed up a committee celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Silver Dart flight, Canada’s first airplane.
With the acquisition of the Montreal Flying Club, founded in 1928, the Scholefield enterprise can truly claim to be Canada’s longest operating flying school organization.
Thanks in good part to Laurentide Aviation, Cartierville was between 1963 and 1968 the busiest airport in Canada. However, proximity with Dorval airport generated problems and Cartierville was closed to general aviation in 1969. Laurentide Aviation temporarily relocated to Saint-Hubert before opening up in 1970 its own airport at Les Cèdres (Cedars), a Montreal suburb. A branch was also briefly operated at Buttonville airport, limited to sales and service. In close to 60 years, Laurentide Aviation produced more than 600 Air Canada and other major airlines pilots. Other members of the Scholefield family contributed as well. Jack’s wife Ann and daugther Catherine were dispatchers. Younger Jacqueline became a flight instructor. His son John succeeded as President. With the acquisition of the Montreal Flying Club, founded in 1928, the Scholefield enterprise can truly claim to be Canada’s longest operating flying school organization.