Second World War vet gets Snowbirds flyby for his 100th birthday

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Chris Bellchamber turns 100 years aged connected Wednesday, and the milestone day was marked with a peculiar flyby connected Monday from the Canadian Forces Snowbirds.

“Wonderful is astir apt the champion connection I tin use,” the Edmonton antheral said of the honour.

Bellchamber has a afloat history. His daughter, Chris Monilawis, said helium was a bomber aviator for Britain successful the Second World War. He immigrated to Canada with his woman successful 1950.

“There helium joined the RCAF (Royal Canadian Air Force) successful 1951, and helium was successful the Maritime patrol. He was besides progressive successful the Cold War and going down to Cuba during the Cuban rocket crisis, pursuing Russian ships,” Monilawis said.

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 “He has had a batch of excitement successful his life.”

Bellchamber’s household wanted to bring immoderate of that excitement back. After learning the Snowbirds would beryllium successful Camrose, Alta., 1 of his daughters reached retired to spot if they would see doing a flyby.

We volition bash a small flyover the Millwoods assemblage astatine astir 13:40 contiguous successful Edmonton to wage tribute and accidental blessed 100th day to  F/L Chris H.C. Bellchamber, RCAF aviator for 415 Swordfish squadron retired Summerside P.E.I and WWII vet. Happy Birthday Sir! 🥳

— CF Snowbirds (@CFSnowbirds) July 26, 2021

“My sister sent retired an email and I went, ‘They aren’t ever going to bash anything,’ and they said, ‘Yeah, sure,'” Monilawis said.

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“It takes your enactment distant a small bit. It’s a spot of a blessing.”

Bellchamber said helium flew 5,000 hours of logged clip with the aerial force.

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“He flew Halifax, Wellingtons, Lancasters successful the war, and erstwhile helium came here, helium flew Lancasters and besides Argus. They are beauteous large planes. We are beauteous arrogant of him,” Monilawis said.

The flyby was conscionable a fewer moments, but it was precise appreciated. Bellchamber has had a pugnacious year. Before Christmas, helium went to infirmary with congestive bosom failure. Then helium caught COVID-19.

“It was a unsmooth spell and we didn’t deliberation we would inactive person him present with us,” Monilawis said.

“He is simply a spot of a fighter. He had malaria doubly (during the Second World War)… and he’s had crab 3 times — truthful the antheral knows however to fight.”

“It’s a pity that I can’t spot overmuch anymore and I can’t perceive overmuch anymore, but present I am,” Bellchamber said.

Despite those challenges, Bellchamber was inactive capable to drawback a glimpse of the peculiar flyby for his milestone birthday.

“I could spot 4 airplanes going by… It’s terrific.”

Snowbirds alert implicit the Shepherd’s Care Centre successful Edmonton, July 26, 2021. Global News

© 2021 Global News, a part of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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