A Matter Of Life And Death

It’s New Year’s Day, 1929 and you’re a pilot living in Edmonton, Alberta.

You’re at home with your family, enjoying the holiday, when the telephone rings. Your friend, president of the Aero Club, has just heard from Alberta’s Deputy Minister of Health, who is dealing with a life-and-death crisis. Here’s what he says:

“We need your help! A serious diphtheria epidemic has broken out in the small community of Little Red River in northern Alberta. One man’s close to death—he may already have died. The only doctor in the area has sent us an urgent telegram requesting an immediate shipment of antitoxin drugs. We have the medicine but it would take weeks to get it there by dogsled. Do you think an airplane could make it there at this time of year? Would you be willing to chance it?

You take a minute to think about this:

Little Red River is about 800 kilometres away, and flying that distance in winter would be very risky! But that medicine could save the lives of two hundred people! Do you accept the challenge?