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Military plane explores Oshawa skies

Globemaster was taking part in exercises at airport

By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express

ISX2008-0035 August 27, 2008 Brantford Municipal Airport, Brantford, Ontario A Canadian Forces CC-177 shown completing and ‘down and dirty’ pass over the field. The CC-177 flew from CFB Trenton to the Brantford Municipal Airport to perform in the Brant United Way Airshow, demonstrating the aircraft’s capabilities. Canadian Forces currently flies 4 CC-177 (Boeing C-17 "Globemaster”) heavy lift airplanes. The Brant United Way Airshow is part of a yearly effort to raise funds for the local United Way which supports vital community services within the city and community.  The airshow is an annual event and is the only free airshow in Canada. Photo by Kevin W. Moore ISX2008-0035 27 août 2008 Aéroport municipal de Brantford, Brantford (Ontario) Un CC177 des Forces canadiennes exécute un vol rase-mottes au-dessus de l’aéroport. Le CC177 a quitté la BFC Trenton et s’est rendu à l’aéroport municipal de Brantford pour démontrer ses capacités lors du Spectacle aérien de Centraide de Brant. Les Forces canadiennes exploitent actuellement quatre avions CC177 (Boeing C17 « Globemaster ») de transport lourd. Le Spectacle aérien de Centraide de Brant est une activité annuelle visant à recueillir des fonds pour l’organisme Centraide local, qui appuie les services communautaires essentiels dans la ville. Il s’agit de l’unique spectacle aérien gratuit au Canada. Photo  Kevin W. Moore

A Royal Canadian Air Force Boeing C-17 Globemaster, much like this one, was recently taking part in training exercises at the Oshawa Airport. (Photo courtesy of the Royal Canadian Air Force).

Residents may have noticed a military plane making its rounds above the city’s skies on a sunny afternoon earlier this month. Oshawa citizens need not fear – it was only doing exercises.

Stephen Wilcox, the manager of the Oshawa Airport, says planes from the Royal Canadian Air Force come in from time to time to do practice approaches for the runway, something they do at many airports across the province.

Wilcox said the plane being used in this exercise was a Boeing C-17 Globemaster.

“They do that at a lot of airports around Ontario,” Wilcox tells The Oshawa Express. “It’s to familiarize themselves with the facilities so if they ever had to come in in the event of an emergency, they’d be familiar with the airport and the approaches.”

Wilcox adds that the plane did two approaches on Nov. 16, and does not know the next time the plane will be back.

“We never know when they’re coming. Of course, Canadian Forces doesn’t tell us what they’re doing,” he says. “We see them from time to time with a number of different aircraft.”

The airport manager says other aircraft that have done practice approaches at the Oshawa Airport include the Lockheed CC-130E Hercules and planes used for search and rescue missions.

The Globemaster was first delivered to the US Air Force in 1993, with the first squadron becoming operational in 1995. The Royal Canadian Air Force, which had previously used Globemasters leased from its counterparts south of the border, purchased four of its own in 2007, followed by a fifth delivered in March. The five planes are stationed out of CFB Trenton and are assigned to the 429 Transport Squadron.