Another very well known aviator that was operating down there was Arngimur Johannsson, the former Managing Director of Air Atlanta Icelandic. (Actually, there were a very large number of Icelanders that flew for Biafra!) There was a reunion of both 'rebel' pilots and those of the Federal Air Force held some time back at the House of Commons in London - I'll try and track down the site and post the photo of those concerned here.
Ceilidh, is it really so? I had no idea that Arngrimur had "worked" in Biafra or anything like that. Do you know any details?
Either summer '97 or '98 I happened to visit Arngrimur in his small hangar at Mossfellsbaer just north of Reykjavik where he keeps his Pitts Special. A local friend of mine was building a scale model of his Pitts. Arngrimur told me that he had been in the States to buy "a few" 747s, and then he had collected the Pitts as change...!!! (It was before he sold Air Atlanta Icelandic).
He was sitting in his sofa in the hangar and running his airline company with his cell phone. He told me that "we" have five Tristars, four 747s and a few 737s. "We" was Arngrimur and his wife. Asked about the exact number of 737s he said that his wife would know. "Wife is running operations, I am only an airliner captain whom operations send out in the world when there is work to be done or when I get in the way in the kitchen". The "kitchen" was the operations office.
When some 5-6-7 years ago they initiated a huge business in Saudi Arabia, then his wife Thora Gudmundsdottir went alone to Saudi Arabia to negotiate the contracts. In a country where no women is allowed even to drive a car this shall have been quite an interesting experience. But she came home to the little shed in Mossfellsbaer (the kitchen) with the signed contracts in her handbag.
Women have always been strong in Iceland. At that time their president was Mrs. Vigdis Finnbogadottir.
That Pitts is by far the most beautiful plane I have ever seen. And the hangar: I really didn't know if I had to take off my shoes before entering. It was clean as a hospital. On the floor where the Pitss might have released a drop of oil there were small bowls to pick it up. But the bowls were empty - that Pitts did not leak any oil.
I was aware that I was talking to a most extraordinary person in aviation, but I had no idea that he as a young man had been involved in Biafra. And he certainly didn't tell me anything about his merits down there. But I am not at all surprised that he was pall with Swedish Count Gustav von Rosen.
Tel me more, tell me more!!!
Best regards, Preben Norholm
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs