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courtesy of George Mayer.

YEMEN - UNYOM


HISTORY


The following brief history of RCAF involvement in the United Nations Yemen Obervation Mission (UNYOM) from 6/11/1963 - 9/4/1964 is from Canadian Department of National Defence Operations Database:


Canada was requested to provide UNYOM’s fifty-man air unit (with three DHC-3 Twin Otters, two DHC-4 Caribous, and three H19 Helicopters), but even before they had departed, Canada offered an additional Caribou and Otter then in service with its UNEF contingent. The UN, meanwhile, offered three Otters from ONUC, the UN operation in the Congo. RCAF technicians were flown there from Canada, disassembled the three machines, loaded them onto USAF C-130 Hercules aircraft, and then reassembled them in Aden.


The Canadian advance party of five persons for UNYOM arrived in Sanaa on 22 June, the new unit being designated No. 134 Air Transport Unit. The main party of 40 departed Trenton on 22 June by 437 Squadron Yukon to Pisa and Hercules to Sanaa on 25 June. The Caribous were to be used for transport, resupply and reconnaissance, while the Otters were used for reconnaissance on a daily basis out of Najran and Jizan.


In November, the Canadian contingent was reorganized. The Otter detachment at Jizan was withdrawn, its responsibilities being taken over by the Caribou. Then, on 15 December, 134 ATU became a detachment of 115 ATU (UNEF), and the establishment reduced to 28. The Otters were withdrawn from use entirely. Further changes occurred in late February when the UN agreed to allow the Caribou to based out of El Arish and make a weekly circuit. This continued until operations ceased on 4 September 1964.


For more details, please see a history UNYOM provided by the Canadian Forces Headquarters (CFHQ), Directorate of History, Report No. 13 titled "Canada and Peace-Keeping Operations Yemen - U.N.Y.O.M.".


If you have any additions to this page, please email Gord Jenkins (click here to email).


Following 134 ATU and UNYOM photographs courtesy of National Defence Image Library, Canadian Forces Joint Imagery Centre (click on photos below to see larger image):


DIARIES / MEMOIRS


The following are general diaries/memoirs from UNYOM (requires Adobe Reader to view):


REMINISCING


Kenneth Gaydamack - Our initial flt from Aden to Sana was was piloted by Stu Olsen and Ron Day. W/C Olsen remained in Sanaa as Air Staff Officer and when visiting Najaaran or Gizan, would capitain the a/c. Other Cairbou pilots were S/L Umbach, F/L Al Smith (2i/c), F/O Hansen, and F/L-F/O? Bourasa. The only Otter pilot I recall that I flew with was F/l Craig. My role was Supply Officer and (primarily) Air Movements Officer. I worked closely with Olsen and took most of my marching orders from him as opposed to Umbach. It was Olsen who dropped me off at Gizan (where the Yugo's were) to meet with Prince Turki to seek his permission and obtain accomodation to operate an Otter from the 'deserted' (we were the only occupants) airfield. Al Smith may have been part of the advance party. The other officer was either a chopper pilot or engineering officer and he remained in Aden to get the chopper airworthy. When it was determined to forgo using the chopper this officer was repatted. Our inital briefing with A/C Lane and our journey to Yemen is another interesting story but I'll save that for another time...


Following 134 ATU photos are courtesy of George Mayer taken 1962-63. Place mouse pointer over image to see description. Click on image to see a larger version of photograph.


George Mayer's photographs around UN HQ at Sana, Yemen:
1. UN HQ, 2. Car supposedly given to Iman of Sana by Hitler, 4. HQ with UN flag, 5. UN Communication Centre:

Sana, Yemen - UN HQ, courtesy of George Mayer. Sana, Yemen - car supposedly given to Iman of Sana by Hitler, courtesy of George Mayer. Sana, Yemen - HQ with UN flag, courtesy of George Mayer. Sana, Yemen - UN Communication Centre, courtesy of George Mayer.


George Mayer's photographs around the outpost at Najran, Saudi Arabia:
1. Otters, 2. Caribou tail, 3. Aerial view, 4. Shower:

Najran, Saudi Arabia - Otters, courtesy of George Mayer. Najran, Saudi Arabia - tail of Caribou, courtesy of George Mayer. Najran, Saudi Arabia - courtesy of George Mayer. Najran, Saudi Arabia - shower, courtesy of George Mayer.


George Mayer photograph's around the outpost of Harad, Saudi Arabia:
1. Otter No 3677, 2. Otter, :

Harad, Saudi Arabia - Otter No 3677 (RCAF Otter), courtesy of George Mayer. Harad, Saudi Arabia - Otter, courtesy of George Mayer.


George Mayer photograph's around Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea):
1. Asmara International Airport, 2. Oil tender circa WW1, 3. Unknown aircrew & UN Cessnas in background, 4. Back street of Asmara, 5. Coptic Christian Church, 6. UN C-46 Commando,

Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) - Asmara International Airport, courtesy of George Mayer. Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) -  oil tender circa WW1, courtesy of George Mayer. Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) - Unknown aircrew, UN Cessnas in background, courtesy of George Mayer. Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) - back street, courtesy of George Mayer. Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) - Coptic Christian Church, courtesy of George Mayer. Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea) - United Nations C-46 Commando, courtesy of George Mayer.


George Mayer photograph's around Gizan (Jizan), Saudi Arabia (Note: Otters in blue colour scheme are on loan from UN Congo mission; Red markngs are RCAF aircraft):

Gizan (Jizan), Saudi Arabia - Otters, courtesy of George Mayer. Gizan (Jizan), Saudi Arabia - Otters, courtesy of George Mayer. Gizan (Jizan), Saudi Arabia - Otters, courtesy of George Mayer.


Desert and ocean photographs by George Mayer:
1. Blue Ocean and 2. Brown Desert Rub' al Khali

Blue ocean, courtesy of George Mayer. Brown desert (Rub' al Khali), courtesy of George Mayer.


George Mayer:
1. George today, 2. George 1962/63, 3. George, pistol and Otter, 4. George with AP bomb dropped week before

George Mayer - courtesy of George Mayer. George Mayer - courtesy of George Mayer. George Mayer and Otter - courtesy of George Mayer. George Mayer- with AP bomb dropped week before, courtesy of George Mayer.


Aircraft photographs courtesy of George Mayer:
1. Otter on patrol, 2. Otter 307 on patrol, 3. Otter on final, 4. Otter cockpit

Otter on patrol, courtesy of George Mayer. Otter 307 on patrol, courtesy of George Mayer. Otter on final, courtesy of George Mayer. Otter cockpit, courtesy of George Mayer.


Aircraft maintenance photographs courtesy of George Mayer:
1. Repair of Caribou aircraft wheel, 2. Otter inspection

Repair of Caribou aircraft wheel, courtesy of George Mayer. Otter inspection, courtesy of George Mayer.


Miscellaneous 134 ATU photographs courtesy of George Mayer:
1. Gas dump, 2. Dhow, 3. Outpost runway, 4. Tribesman, 5. RAF Hunter at Aden

Gas dump, courtesy of George Mayer. Dhow, courtesy of George Mayer. Outpost runway, courtesy of George Mayer. Yemen tribesmen, courtesy of George Mayer. Aden - RAF Hunter, courtesy of George Mayer.