Saturday, October 06, 2007

George Arthur Neal 1919-2016

George Arthur Neal was born in Toronto, Ontario, on November 21, 1919, receiving his education at Dublin Public School, Earl Haig Collegiate and one term at Northern Vocational in Toronto. After serving an apprenticeship from 1933-38, George qualified as a licenced Auto and Aero Engine Mechanic. During 1935 he learned to fly with the Toronto Flying Club. In 1938 George joined de Havilland Aircraft of Canada as an AEM. In 1942 he joined the RCAF and was posted to 10 AOS, serving as Pilot, Flight Commander, Test Pilot and Assistant Maintenance Superintendant until 1945. After his discharge he rejoined DHC in 1946 as an AEM, becoming a Test Pilot in 1947, Chief Test Pilot in 1948, Chief Experimental Pilot, Chief Production Pilot and in February 1975, Manager, Flight Operations.
George has accumulated 13,500 flying hours on over 85 differnet types of landplane, seaplane, skiplane, amphibian, flying boat, single prop, multi prop, turbo prop, jet, helicopter and glider. He has flown in 38 different countries, the furthest north being Thule, Greenland, and the furthest south Punta Arenas, Chile. He has flown the Atlantic four times via Santo Maria and once via Iceland and operated in temperatures from -30°F to +120°F.
George did the Prototype testing on the Chipmunk, Beaver, Turbo Beaver, Otter and Caribou. He carried out the First experimental STOL work on the single engine Otter with blown elevator and rudder, and extra large flap, demonstrating the aircraft at Rockcliffe. He pioneered and demonstrated STOL characteristics in the Beaver, Otter and Caribou to customers from all over the world.