Kiowa

Kiowa, CH-136

Bell

Tail #:  136204

Dimensions:  Rotor Diameter: 10.77m, Length: 12.49m, Height: 2.90m

Max Weight:  1,360 kg

Max Speed:  222 km/h

Crew:  2 pilots or pilot/observer, 2 passengers

Role:  Light Observation, Trainer

In service:  1971-1996  

The Museum’s Kiowa started its career with the US Army and came to Canada in 1971. It began service with the No. 3 Canadian Forces Flying Training School at CFB Portage La Prairie, Manitoba, where it sported orange markings over camouflage. It flew in the lead position as a member of the 1977 and 1978 Dragonflies demonstration team, but in June 1979 it was damaged while with the School. After being repaired, it returned to service and in the 1980s it was used by reserve squadrons at CFB Downsview in Ontario. In June of 1987, while being operated by a crew from 411 Squadron, the Kiowa suffered damage again when it lost power and had to make an emergency landing near Paint Lake, Ontario. It was later transferred to CFB Edmonton in February 1995, where it served with 408 Canada Goose Squadron until its retirement.

Upon its retirement in 1996, the aircraft was given its current paint scheme to honour both the Kiowa and 408 Squadron’s contribution to the Canadian Forces. The image of the flying geese represents 408’s mascot, while the ‘For Freedom’ phrase is the squadron’s motto. The black-and-white markings on the tail are the same markings used by Allied Invasion aircraft during WWII, in which 408 Squadron was involved. The ‘EQ’ represents the unit’s WWII tail code. The Kiowa has been with the National Air Force Museum since 1995.