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Bill Corfield (1920-2013)


Image of london free press building

Serva Fidem:  Bill Corfield (1920-2013), London's First Airborne News Reporter

Bill Corfield, Canada's first pilot reporter, died on December 9th, 2013 at the age of 93.  Formerly with the RCAF, Corfield was the pilot of the News Hawk from 1945 to 1952.  The News Hawk, a five-passenger, twin-engined Cessna Crane, was the property of the London Free Press Printing Company, making it the first newspaper in Canada to own and operate its own aircraft.  When Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip in 1947, Corfield flew photographs of the royal wedding from Cleveland to London so that London Free Press readers could see pictures the same day the couple was wed.  Corfield had a long career with Corfield Associates, Public Relations Services from 1965, the year he established the company until 1999.  He also enriched local history by writing many books on such varied topics as early aviation, James Edwin Bowes, Boy Scouts, Canadian Fusiliers of London, Emco, HMCS Prevost, home front during World War II, Kiwanis, Lawson and Jones Printers, Lawson family, London Flying Club, Middlesex County Courthouse, Red Cross, Rotary Club,  22 (London) Service Battalion and Vimy Branch 145, Royal Canadian Legion.  Corfield also penned at least five novels.        



Image of london free press building

Glossy print of the London Free Press building at 430 Richmond Street. The words "The Free Press" can be seen on the building. The sign on the bottom right of the building reads "THE FREE PRESS EST'D.1849". A woman stands in front of the building viewing the signs posted in the window.