SN: 27-3935
How I came to find the fate of C-FWZZ

One of my favourite means of advertising when I had my sign and graphics business was to apply a unique skin to the cover of my Mac G4 iBook; I would come up with some outrageous concoction that I imagined would draw attention and perhaps the odd inquiry as to my services; more often than not, they would be aviation themed.

So was the case for what I had in mind to replace the current one; can’t recall exactly what that was other than it was getting “tired”; my idea was to use a photo of an Aztec instrument panel, as large as possible, and then put my ad copy on that; well as sad as this may sound, I did not then, nor do now, have in my possession, any photos of C-FWZZ’s panel; how bad is that! that’s where Google comes in handy; let me have a look; hmm, close but no cigar; hey I know … let me punch in the US registration that WZZ had inherited when it was sold by the estate of the person who had purchased it from us; you never know, the company in Tampa, FL that I last knew it was registered to may have it for sale and if so, there is bound to be a panel photo.

So in was entered “N444DA” and be damned, if the first few entries were NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) accident reports; what the heck; checked out the first one, a synopsis, as the FAA did not have jurisdiction for the accident location (but was the country of manufacture); I couldn’t believe what I was reading! crashed shortly after take-off, at night, in the Turks & Caicos; December 26, 2005; all 4 aboard perished! OMG! I then began a more thorough search and was able to pull up the local media reports from the Caribbean; found the name of the pilot and passengers; not much was there surrounding the events or any idea of the cause, other than it hit the water at high speed shortly after that night time departure; you can imagine that this really rattled me; hell, made me shiver! I had always daydreamed that if I ever won the lottery, I would track down old WZZ and get her back; guess that’s not ever going to happen now;

A bit more research lead me to a memorial page for the pilot, Carson Garland, of Turks & Caicos; I made a couple of entries expressing my sadness and offering my condolences; but what I read there rattled me even further; he was 33 years old at the time of the accident but what really hit me was his birth date; 24 June; that was the EXACT date that I came across the initial NTSB synopsis!; couple that with the fact that Carson and the passengers died on the same date that my Father passed away, Boxing Day, the day after Christmas, and I was really starting to wonder;

Some time had passed and I was looking for something along the same line again and I thought I would search some more on the subject; I really wanted to know for sure that it definitely was WZZ; know exactly what happened; and I really wanted to find some photos so as to provide irrefutable evidence; it didn’t take long and I found the British Civil Aviation Authority’s official report, the one that I have in the other post; when I came to the photo of the remains scattered across a hangar, laid out as they do to recreate the approximate configuration, my heart sunk; totally; completely; there was absolutely no doubt; that was indeed C-FWZZ; the paint job was unique; I know, I designed it back in 1978.

I read and re-read the narratives to try to understand what could have happened; after a few times through, something occurred to me as to what could have happened, or more specifically not happened, that ultimately led to this tragic outcome; but that will be the subject of another post.

2 thoughts on “How I came to find the fate of C-FWZZ”

  1. Sad end to a great airplane.
    As I remember (it was a while ago) my father was the first owner of CF-WZZ and I have fond memories of flying it in the late 1960’s between Calgary and Windermere, BC. I loved that call sign. I wonder if Transport Canada would reissue it.

    • Hi Gordon,
      Very sad indeed.
      That is very interesting that your father was the first owner. The story I got from Aero Flying Academy in Edmonton (Muni) where we bought it, was that it was traded in on a Navajo by a company called Kenting Drilling and that it had operated in the Arctic.
      Loved the ident as well. Was a bit of an issue when operating south of the border as I was used to listening for zed zed and not zee zee! LOL 🙂 I checked the TC registry and it is not currently in use but it also does not show up as an available registration. For a while, after we sold it and it headed to the USA, the registration was used on an Astar 350 out of Toronto.
      If you have any photos of her that you would be willing to share, that would be fantastic as unfortunately, the result of numerous moves and other life events, the ones you see on the site are the only ones I still have.
      Speaking of Windemere, BC, I was wondering if you or your father knew a friend of mine, Reid Madson, who operated a mountain skiing biz with a Turbo Porter and Beaver.


Leave a Comment