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Jake Haycock Biography

Biography of Jack Kenneth Haycock

May 22, 1936 ~ September 9, 2009

 

This biography was a family project worked on by both Jake and Sharleine, and is presented here with Sharleine’s kind permission.

Born in London, Ontario on May 22, 1936 to Charles and Alice Haycock, Jack Kenneth Haycock, known as ‘Ken’ by all his family, attended public school at Lady Beck Public School, until Grade 8.  Times were hard in those days. Jack grew up with his brothers and sisters and attended Egerton United Church. He was in Boy Scouts and loved his bike and his dog. Grades 9 through 12 were spent at H.B. Beal Technical and Commercial High School.  He graduated in June, 1953. As a teen he set pins at the local bowling alley and turned out to be a pretty good bowler himself as was evident later on with the bowling teams on the RCAF bases.

 

Jack had four siblings, Muriel, Gordon, Ross and Donald and was predeceased by all four: Donald (1938) Ross (1999), Muriel (2000) and Gordon (2002).

 

When Jack was 15 he suffered through the untimely death of his father at age 50. After going to the hospital with a sore throat and dying that evening, his cause of death was never revealed and remains a mystery to this day. His mother passed away in Nov. 1978 at age 72. 

 

After graduation, Jack worked for a year at the Canadian National Railway in the boxcar repair shops. He was determined not to spend the rest of his days in the rail yards in the footsteps of his father, who died all too prematurely.   So………………  

 

………..In April 1954, Jack walked into the Royal Canadian Air Force Recruiting Office in London and enlisted as a Flight Cadet.  He commenced basic training in London, Ontario on May 21st, one day short of his 18th birthday and completed basic training in August, 1954. By age 19 he had his wings.

 

From August/54 to April/55 he attended Flying Training School (#2 FTS) In Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, learning to fly Harvards, now a Pilot Officer.  He continued training at #3 FTS (flight training school) on T-33’s in Gimli, Manitoba from May – August, 1955, where he graduated as Flying Officer. 

 

After training at Gimli, he was scheduled to be transferred to RCAF Station MacDonald, MB to commence training on the F-86 Sabre aircraft and a certain posting overseas.  Unfortunately, a fellow course member got sick and Jack was needed by the Flying Instructor School at Trenton, Ontario.  This changed the course of Jack’s career as it began a chain of events that would have otherwise unfolded differently had he gone to MacDonald, MB.  He remained at Trenton from Sept. /55 to Jan. /56. 

 

He was posted to Gimli, Manitoba to instruct pilots on basic jet training on T-33’s. He was there From Feb. /56 to Nov. /56 with the rank of Flying Officer. 

 

Dec. /56 placed him at #1 Advanced Flying School (AFS) Saskatoon, instructing pilots on advanced instrument flying.  His first day in Saskatoon was a very bright and sunny day in December and as it was “just a short walk” from the barracks to the hanger……………he froze both his ears!  He remained in Saskatoon until June, 1959.

 

In 1958, the Canadian Government gave the Governments of Greece and Turkey 25 T-33’s and Jack was selected to pilot (ferry) one of the aircraft overseas (AC#494).  This trip took him from Trenton to Goose Bay, Labrador. – Sondrestrom, Greenland – Keflavic, Iceland – Prestwick, Scotland – Marville, France – Decimomannu, Italy and onto Elevsis, Athens, Greece.  He departed May, 10/58 and arrived in Athens on the 16th.  The return trip was a very noisy one as they were sitting in the rear of a C-119, “Flying Boxcar” aircraft, not in seats per say, but hammock-like slings lengthwise on either side of the aircraft with cold box lunches.  That was his only ‘overseas’’ trip in his Air Force career.  All this likely due to fate intervening that day he had to take a sick officer’s place and be transferred to Trenton, ON instead of MacDonald, MB.  Who knows? 

 

It was about this time that Jack had been courting his bride-to-be, Margaret Grulke who worked at a restaurant in Saskatoon.  They fell in love and were married in the Base Chapel in Saskatoon on June 6, 1959.  He still gets together with his best man, Wes Allen (Fran) for the odd game of golf.  Margaret remained in Saskatoon, while Jack was assigned to ‘temporary duty’ at Cold Lake, AB being trained on the CF-100 and traveling home every weekend to see his new bride.  He remained at the #3 All Weather Fighter Operational Training Unit (OTU) from July to Sept., 1959.

 

After graduating from OTU at Cold Lake, AB, he was transferred to the CF-100 All Weather Fighter Squadron 416 at St. Hubert, Quebec from October 1959 to August, 1961. During Sept.-Oct., 1960, he returned to Saskatoon for a three week course and became a Unit Instrument Check Pilot

 

In January, 1960, Jack was promoted to the rank of Flight Lieutenant.  416 CF-100 AW (F) Squadron was disbanded in August, 1961 and was reformed as CF-101 Squadron at Baggotville, Quebec.

 

v      On April 6th, 1961 Jack and Margaret experienced the joy of their first child, Maria Lynn and the fun of parenthood began.

 

Jack was then transferred to the EWU (Electronic Warfare Unit) which was also based at St. Hubert where he served from Sept., 1961 to January, 1963, flying CF-100 aircraft.

 

Worthy of note: During the height of the Cuban crisis back in the fall of 1962, Jack had the honour and privilege of flying Air Vice Marshall Harvey to Goose Bay, Labrador and return and also to NORAD Headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado in the T-33.

 

In February, 1963, another transfer came along taking Jack and Margaret to Downsview, ON where he worked as a Proficiency Check Pilot on T-33’s, Dakotas (C-47) and Expeditor (C-45) aircraft.

 

v      On August 19, 1963, son Mark Kenneth provided additional joy when he was born.  Jack and Margaret were residing in Rexdale, ON at that time - not far from the Downsview Base.

 

In August, 1964, Jack took an Otter Conversion Course in Trenton, Ontario and after graduating from there, he returned to Downsview as a Regular Force Support Officer for 400 and 411 Auxiliary Squadrons.  At this time his pilot’s license was endorsed for land and sea, flying Otters, T-33’s and C-45’s.

 

The many aircraft that Jack had the privilege of flying during his RCAF career were: Harvard, Chipmunk (1 flight)  T-33,      F-86 Sabre (2 flights), CF-100 (beloved ‘Clunk’ as she was affectionately known, member of the 1,000 hour club), C-45 Expeditor, C-47 Dakota, Otter and on July 25th, 1963, he flew in the back seat of a CF-101 Voodoo, where they reached an altitude of 58,000 feet and a speed of 1,200 miles per hour, breaking the sound barrier.  Jack feels his career in the Air Force was blessed because all his postings were flying positions and not behind a desk in some remote part of the country.  Distant Early Warning Radar sites (DEW Lines) were part of the North American Defense System and were located in remote areas of the far north.  Throughout his Air Force career Jack accumulated a total of 4,514.10 hours in flying time. 

 

After graduating from Gimli, MB, he was given a five-year commission.  At the end of the five years they either offered you a permanent commission or an extension.  After five extensions, Jack decided to change careers and joined Air Canada.  Although he was honorably discharged on April 21, 1966, sick leave and other accumulated time enabled him to join Air Canada on February 7th, 1966. 

 

Air Canada Years - 1966 ~ 1996

 

Jack enjoyed a long and unblemished career with Air Canada.  In the early years, he and the family remained at 55 Rosefair Crescent, Rexdale, ON.

 

He commenced pilot training on February 7, 1966.  On May 19th, 1966 he’d earned his wings as a 2nd officer on the DC-8.  On January 17, 1968, Jack was promoted to First Officer on the DC-8.  He bid on the DC-9 and was transferred to First Officer on that aircraft March 1, 1969.  He transferred back to First Officer on the DC-8 on November 6, 1972.  He was promoted to Captain on the DC-9 on June 17, 1974.

 

In the late 60’s Jack, Margaret and family moved to Belfountain, ON. However country life proved not to be the ideal conditions for two ‘never-before-isolated’ children and so they moved back to Mississauga and settled in Lorne Park.

 

Exactly one year after Jack was promoted to Captain on the DC-9, tragedy struck on June 17, 1975 when he lost his wife Margaret to a single car accident while on her way to pick him up from a flight.  He was left to raise his children, Maria then 14 and Mark almost 12.  He and the children went through some difficult times during that first year, grieving the loss of a wife and mother and juggling school and leisure activities with Jack’s varied Air Canada flying schedule.

 

However, while doing Ottawa-Charlottetown turn-a-rounds in July 1975, Jack met his present wife Sharleine who was working for Air Canada Personnel and Admin, and who had suffered a similar loss in December 1975 when her husband was killed in a single car accident. Jack and Sharleine were married on December 4, 1976.  Jack continued to enjoy his life as a pilot for the nation’s airline and on March 29, 1984 he was promoted to Captain on the Boeing 727 aircraft. He received his Captaincy on the Boeing-767 on November 11, 1988 on which he carried out the remainder of his career, until he retired on June 1, 1996 at 60 (the mandatory age for pilots to retire). He and Sharleine moved from their home in Lorne Park to their present residence at 4038 Bridlepath Trail, Mississauga on the hottest day in several decades (July 13th, 1983) leaving behind a big swimming pool and maybe a few regrets, which of course would be short-lived.

Throughout Jack’s career with Air Canada, he received exemplary ratings on all of his check flights and throughout flight simulator training.  He never had an incident where his aircraft or passengers were ever in danger and he never caused any damage to any aircraft in his command.  He was held in very high esteem by his colleagues and his company superiors.  His many travels with Air Canada took him to the following airports: Goose Bay, Gander, St. Hon’s, Stevenville, Sydney, Halifax, Yarmouth, Saint John, Moncton, Fredericton, Montreal, Quebec City, Sept Isle, Rouyn, Val-D’or, Vancouver, Victoria, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins, Sudbury, North Bay, Windsor, London, Ottawa, TORONTO (home base), Boston, New York, Tampa, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Atlanta, Cleveland, Chicago, Houston, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Mexico City, Nassau, Bermuda, Montego Bay, Kingston, Antigua, Barbados, Freeport, Port of France, Port-Au-Prince, Pointe-A-Pitre, Port of Spain, Shannon, Belfast, Dublin, Glasgow, Manchester, Prestwick, London, Berlin, Zurich, Frankfurt, Paris, Dusseldorf, Vienna, Copenhagen, Moscow, Prague, Zagreb. 

 

Sharleine has many fond memories of the layovers she went on with Jack to destinations in Canada, the U.S. and Europe  She accompanied him on his 2nd last trip to Frankfurt return and was waiting for him airside as he taxied in from his final fight which was from Zurich.  The Flight Ops staff at Zurich gave him a great send off and honored him with a chocolate mousse cake inscribed with his last flight along with an authentic Swiss cow bell with his name and last flight inscribed on it.  His first officer Remy Gosselin honored Jack with a ‘Bon Voyage’ on board the flight with all the back-end crew taking part in congratulating him and photo ops in the flight deck and business class cabin, all of which have provided many fond memories for years to come.  His career with Air Canada lasted for 30 years, 3 months, 3 weeks and 1 day.  Jack accumulated EIGHTEEN THOUSAND, SIX HUNDRED AND FIFTY flying hours with Air Canada. 

 

1995 - Jack becomes a Grandpa!

 

May 24th, 1995, Jack became a grandfather to Mark’s daughter, Anastasia Margaret.

 

Retirement

 

A great retirement party was held at Jack’s home on Bridlepath Trial in Mississauga June 1, 1996 - attended by many colleagues, friends and family.

 

Jack enjoyed retirement to the fullest; and although he and Sharleine had done some traveling, the highlight being a cruise to Alaska and more recently, a special few days in Austria as guests of dear friends from Bremen, Germany, Jack no longer had any desire to even get on an airplane, let alone take up flying of any kind, accept for their many trips to his beloved Barbados. This has since come to an end when they made 2002 their last trip together there. Health issues brought to an end, this 26 year annual pilgrimage which commenced on their honeymoon in December, 1976.  The island always held special place in their hearts.

 

Jack tried his hand at golf while vacationing in Barbados around 1980.  Knowing that he would need an outlet at retirement, Sharleine had the foresight to purchase him clubs and bag in ‘81 which sat idle for the rest of that year.  The following year, he started golfing on an irregular basis but since retiring, he golfed at least twice a week with his Air Canada buddies and friends and just loved it. Over the winter when they weren’t golfing, they stayed in touch by e-mail or lunching together to plan the first round as soon as the first course was open for business. Other outings included meeting once a month for a RAPCAN luncheon in Milton and a monthly lunch with some 400 Squadron lads in Port Credit.  Besides taking care of his home and yard, Jack spent much of his free time volunteering at the Church of Saint Mark, Lutheran and going for long walks through the wooded paths of his Mississauga neighbourhood.

 

While in St. Hubert, Quebec, Jack was confirmed in the Lutheran Church under the guidance of Rev. Bartch.  Following their move to Rexdale, ON he and Margaret were members in good standing at Our Saviour Lutheran Church under Rev. Robert Hutchison.  When they moved to Belfountain, ON, they drifted away from the church. When Jack met Sharleine in Ottawa, they were counseled by Lutheran Pastor, John Keekley and were married in his church in Ottawa Dec. 4, 1976.  They returned to the church by attending Saint Mark’s in Mississauga in December, 1978 following the death of Jack’s mother at which a Lutheran Pastor officiated and through follow-up, reunited them with a church in their neighbourhood.

 

Jack had been a member of St. Mark’s since early 1979 and felt his calling was to be a member of the Board of Trustees and support/maintenance man for the church and the Nursery School of the Church of St. Mark.

Jack was loved by so many. He was very modest about his accomplishments and never expected any recognition for all the tasks he joyfully performed for the Lord. His buddies at St. Mark’s were a big part of Jack’s life and he enjoyed meeting them at the church regularly to do maintenance and just shoot the breeze. 

 

After Jack was discharged from the Air Force, he had very little contact with his Air Force comrades (with the exception of his navigator), until he met with an Ex--416 Sqn. member in 1991. From that meeting, the idea of a Squadron Reunion was born and Jack played an integral role in organizing the event which was held in Toronto in 1993.  Of the 144 members of 416 CF-100 Sqn., they were able to contact over 80 members including Jack’s Commanding Officer, most of whom he had not seen or heard from in 32 years.  Needless to say it was the ‘good old days’ all over again. He was the point man for all contacts and updates through an e-letter which he compiled a few times a year.

 

Since that time, the All Weather Fighters Association (AWFA) was formed and Jack and Sharleine have attended their Reunions which were held in various locales across Canada, the most recent one being Niagara Falls in August of 2007.  Smaller reunions have been arranged either in Comox, B.C., Greenwood, N.S. and Mont Tremblant, Quebec these consisting mostly of 416 Sqn. fellas and their wives or the guys from the 5408 group (the initial intake in Moose Jaw, SK.)  The most recent get together was with a few of the 416 squadron fellas at a Lynx Golf Tournament in Comox, August, 2009 whereat Jack took great pride in finally winning the Goski Cup. And Jack being Jack, he wanted all the guys present to have their names on the cup because he thought they were all winners.