Member of Parliament Laurie Hawn Attends Unveiling of Rare Canadian-Made Aircraft

WETASKIWIN, AB, Nov. 16, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Laurie Hawn, Member of Parliament (Edmonton Centre), on behalf of the Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, today attended the unveiling of a de Havilland DH.80A Puss Moth to highlight the Government of Canada's support for the airplane's repatriation from the United Kingdom by the Reynolds-Alberta Museum.

"As a retired Lieutenant-Colonel of the Royal Canadian Air Force, I am particularly pleased to see this Puss Moth incorporated into the Museum's aircraft collection," said Mr. Hawn. "This plane was built during the 'Golden Era' of aviation, and now the artifact has found a permanent home at the Reynolds-Alberta."

The de Havilland Aircraft Company produced a total of 284 Puss Moth planes, 25 of which were manufactured in Toronto. Funding provided by the Department of Canadian Heritage assisted the Reynolds-Alberta Museum in repatriating what is believed to be the last Puss Moth produced in Canada. This acquisition will help the Museum tell the story of the Puss Moth's contribution to the development of Canada's northern natural resources.

"Our Government is proud to have contributed to bringing back this valuable element of our national heritage," said Minister Glover. "As we approach the 150th anniversary of Canada's Confederation in 2017, this acquisition will provide Canadians with opportunities to enhance their knowledge of their country and its aviation history."

"The Reynolds-Alberta Museum was very pleased to receive funding and support from the federal government to acquire a highly significant Canadian aircraft, the 1935 de Havilland Puss Moth," said Noel Ratch, Director of the Reynolds-Alberta Museum. "Canadian Heritage has been a valued partner in this acquisition, and we are glad to have this aircraft on display for the public to enjoy."

The Puss Moth plane was popular in Canada because it could cover long distances quickly and its enclosed design protected the pilot and the passengers from harsh climates. In the 1930s, mining companies used the airplane to explore and discover new mining and petroleum areas in the Canadian North.

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $117,940 through the Movable Cultural Property Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage. This program helps collecting institutions repatriate cultural property to Canada, or keep in Canada cultural objects of outstanding significance and national importance that would otherwise be exported.

SOURCE: Canadian Heritage

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For more information (media only), please contact:

Marisa Monnin
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
and Official Languages
819-997-7788

Media Relations
Canadian Heritage
819-994-9101
1-866-569-6155
media@pch.gc.ca

(This news release is available on the Internet at www.canadianheritage.gc.ca under Newsroom.)


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