Air Canada’s famous Gimli Glider made its final flight today, to retirement in the Mojave Desert.
Aviation buffs also know the 767 by its registration mark, C-GAUN, and its story is legend.
On July 23, 1983, when C-GAUN was still a very new aircraft, it ran out of fuel in the air with 61 passengers and five crew members aboard. The pilots glided 60 miles and landed safely at a former airbase in Gimli, Manitoba. It was an incredible feat of aviation, the first successful dead-stick landing of a commercial airliner.
The nose gear was damaged, but the jet was repaired and flew for nearly 25 more years.
The captain and first officer who made that historic landing were aboard for the final flight.
A story in the Toronto Globe & Mail has an interview with the captain, Robert Pearson, and suggests that several organizations are interested in acquiring the Gimli Glider. It sure would make a great museum piece.