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–––Reviews of Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation–––

“Randall Whitcomb’s Avro Aircraft and Cold War Aviation is far and away the best and truest work on the subject to date. Having been so much aware of the terrible and misguided politics of the day, it is refreshing to read such a superb and unbiased analysis. The research evident is fantastic and the artwork exceptional.”

Peter Cope, WW II Mustang pilot, test pilot for Armstrong Whitworth aircraft post-war, Avro Canada C-102 Jetliner, CF-100, CF-105 and Avrocar test pilot. (Later with Boeing.)

“In the past two decades we have had more than enough books on the subject of the Avro Arrow, but this one is significantly different.
“The author, Randall Whitcomb, ex-CF pilot, brings to this remarkable story a wealth of experience in the flying, engineering and political aspects of Canadian Aviation, past and present.
“Whitcomb has brought together many “loose ends” in the whole history of Canadian aviation in the Cold War period, including the global impact on the demise of A.V. Roe Canada in 1959. He has marshalled h is arguments in a unique “warts and all” documentation of the true facts about the political climate in that incredible era and addressed the vexed question of “what might have been” had common sense ruled the day, instead of the “infighting” that actually occurred.
“This is a book that should be mandatory reading for all students of Canadian aviation history and every politician in Canada, the USA and the UK.”

J.C. (Jim) Floyd, former V.P. Engineering Avro Aircraft Ltd. and Director Engineering A.V. Roe Canada Ltd.

“Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation is hands-down the best work on Avro Canada to date. Well researched, well written and well illustrated.”

Bill Waterton; WW II RAF Spitfire and Mustang and Air Fighting Development Unit pilot, Post-war RAF High Speed Flight pilot, Gloster Aircraft chief test pilot and the first pilot to fly the Avro Canada CF-100 “Canuck.”

“Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation is a superb volume, researched, illustrated and written by Randall Whitcomb (some talent indeed!). While with Spar Aerospace I had the distinct honour of accompanying Jim Floyd and his wife Irene to North Dakota where he was honoured with the Aerospace Pioneer of the Year award. Strange, is it not, that the United States would bestow such an honour while the silence in Canada is as deafening as the cut-up chunks of those magnificent planes, the Jetliner and Arrows.”
“Whitcomb has done a signal service to Canadian aviation history.”

Christopher G. Trump; American-born former NASA instructor and former V.P. Spar Aerospace.

“It has been my view for some time that aviation historians have failed to recognize fully the significant contributions to both military and civil aircraft design made by Avro Canada. Whitcomb’s new book should help put this into accurate perspective.”

Robert Rummel,, chief technical officer of Trans World Airlines & technical advisor to Howard Hughes

“Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation certainly appears to be a “Magnum Opus.”

Bernie Patrick, aeronautical engineer with Hawker Siddeley and J.C. Floyd & Associates (ret’d)

“Randy Whitcomb has combined his three passions -flying, aviation history and aviation art, -and come up with the definitive history of aviation during the Cold War, including the demise of A.V. Roe Canada (Avro) in 1959.
“The author, a former air force pilot, displays a sound understanding of the engineering principles involved in the design and construction of supersonic aircraft, and uses charts, graphs, tables, photos and engineering drawings to good advantage. Many of Whitcomb’s original paintings embellish the book. According to Jim Floyd, former vice-president and director of engineering at Avro Canada, “This is a book that should be mandatory reading for all students of Canadian aviation history and every politician in Canada, the USA, and the U.K.”

Vic Johnson; Editor Airforce Magazine

Randall Whitcomb’s Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation is a tour de force. It is absolutely packed with statistics, technical data and analysis.
I am astounded by the enormous research that the author has done to put this together in coherent form. It must have taken him years! [10 in fact!] The depth of his technical analysis is most impressive. I particularly enjoyed his dissertation on the unique features built into the Avro Arrow to make it efficient at supersonic speeds. For a time I taught aerodynamics at the Royal Air Force’s Central Flying School but in those days we were only scratching the surface of transonic flight.
It gave me a feeling of grim satisfaction to read that events subsequent to my resignation from the R.A.F. confirms that people much smarter than I agreed with my disgust at the stupid policy whereby the Hon. Duncan Sandys (then the British defence minister) proposed to abolish all U.K. manned fighter defences and replace them only with ground to air missile defences. Fortunately wiser heads later prevailed but by that time I had packed it in and returned to Canada.
It’s too bad someone could not get inside the minds of some of the principal players in those eventful days when the Avro Arrow was being developed and reveal to us now exactly why they took the decisions they did. I suspect we are better off not knowing!
This book certainly confirms that Canada had a fabulous opportunity to be a world leader in the development of modern fighter aircraft, but let that opportunity slip from our grasp.

F.A. (Ted) Johnson D.F.C., C.Eng., A.F.R.Ae.S

Biography of F.A. (Ted) Johnson

F.A. (Ted) Johnson served as a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) during the Second World War, first as a flying instructor and thereafter as an intruder pilot flying the famous de Havilland Mosquito on operations over Europe and won the Distinguished Flying Cross.Thereafter he attended Queen’s University in Kingston Ontario, Canada and then returned to England to join the Royal Air Force (RAF) and fly for the next 12 years. There, at the Central Flying School (CFS) he trained qualified pilots to become flying instructors and later commanded the CFS ground school where he lectured in Principles of Flight (aerodynamics) and Physiological Aspects of Instrument Flying, in addition to his administrative duties. Thereafter, he graduated from the RAF’s Staff College and commanded a jet fighter squadron based in northern Germany at the height of the Cold War. Returning to the U.K., he was assigned to the Ministry of Supply (MOS) to supervise the development of some of the new fighter aircraft (the Gloster Javelin and the English Electric Lightning) for the RAF and was then posted to Air Plans, Headquarters Fighter Command where he was a senior member of the team planning the integration of manned fighter aircraft and surface-to-air missile defences of the U.K. for the next decade. [This position is particularly pertinent to items in Mr. Johnson’s review regarding Avro Aircraft & Cold War Aviation.He returned to Canada and was engaged by de Havilland Aircraft of Canada as a test pilot on 1st January, 1959 where he would later fly and work with Don Rogers, the former chief test pilot at Avro Canada. In his 21 years with de Havilland he served as Military Sales Manager, became Vice President of Contracts and Programme Administration and later became Vice President of Customer Support and was elected to the Board of Directors. He is an aeronautical engineer and an Associate Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society in Britain. He flew a total of 42 different aircraft types (not including different Marks) during his career.He is chairman of the 418 Squadron Association and spokesman for the Prince Edward Counties chapter of the Organisation for Quality Education.

PLEASE NOTE: Images displayed on this site do not have the ability to express the quality of Randall Whitcomb Art.
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