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Thread: Last Plane from Uli

  1. #1
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    Default Last Plane from Uli

    Gents
    Does anyone have the book by any chance?
    Thanks
    Franek

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    Nothing by that title Franek but I do have Lucky No 13 by Tony (Steini) Jonsson the icelandic ex RAF pilot if that would be of any help.
    This was his 2nd book which carried on from the delightful Dancing in the Skies which covered his RAF career.
    Jonsson was the Captain of the DC6 which I believe was the last aircraft out of Uli ?

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    Thanks, I am actually after a fiction book by Charles Kearey, however this one could be also of interest.
    Re Lucky No 13, what period Jonsson flew in Biafra, and does he cover it in any detail?

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    I will check tomorrow Franek - TJ was the chief pilot for Transavia/Nordchurchaid,not sure of exact dates but he flew 413? aid flights into Uli,so he was there for some considerable time.
    I will check the book tomorrow for any dates,and yes he does cover quite a lot of detail.
    There was a TV documentary (jesus christ airlines) made about 15 years ago and shown on british TV but I stupidly lent mine to somebody and never got it back.

    rgds baz

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    Thanks! No hurry, I will be out for tomorrow. My late pal did 36 flights for JCA back in October 1969, and aside I am researching another man involved in Biafra run.

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    Up early this morning anyway : )
    Tony Jonsson's book is not exactly written as a diary but looks like he was based at Sao Tome from Sept/Oct 1967 until (I guess) at least Jan 1970.
    It is not as good a book as 'Dancing in the skies',but interesting nonetheless.
    What nationality is your other man ?

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    Thanks! I will drop you a mail. Both men were Poles, and interestingly knew each other.
    Still looking for someone with Kearey book.

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    I had a quick look at the relevant chapters of Lucky No 13 last night.The dates I have taken from a variety of sources but I think they are accurate.
    It looks like 2x JCA aircraft landed at Uli on 12 Jan 1970,Jonsson landing first in a DC6 with a cargo of stockfish and taking out the wife and children of the Biafran PASO (principle air staff officer).
    As soon as Jonsson departed Uli - a C97 landed - quickly unloaded with engines running and departed safely,immediately afterwards the Uli runway was shelled heavily and not used again for aid flights.
    No radio contact was possible with Biafra the next day but they thought that the Uga strip might still be in Biafran hands,Jonsson was the only JCA pilot who had seen Uga (from the ground) and he was captain on this flight - so 2 aircraft took off from Sao Tome (the 2nd to provide a radio link) - Jonsson landed 2 tons of stockfish at Uga.They evacuated 45 people (including the PASO),came under heavy fire into the cockpit,Jonsson had kept the 2 stbd engines running and they just managed to get away safely although some of the refugees had been badly wounded.
    Jonsson flew the last Flugjhalp/JCA aircraft out of Sao Tome (he does not mention destination) on or about the 29th Jan 1970 and that was that - Gowan refused permission for any further aid flights.
    He does not usually give crew names unless they were flying in his crew and as far as I can see does not mention any Polish Pilots.
    Uga airstrip was approx 27km NE of Uli.

    rgds baz
    Last edited by bvs; 2nd May 2017 at 06:08.

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