30 September 2019: Late this summer, the RMR Foundation received a letter soliciting information about a Major Holt, who had served with the Regiment in WW1, and who also happened to be the very first pilot to land at the Karlovy Vary Airport in Czech Republic… 90 years ago this month!
Radek Nový, from the “Association of Friend of Airport Karlovy Vary” had this to say about their commemorations:
“On Saturday, 21st of September, was held under the auspices of the
Regional Governor of Karlovy Vary region, our event so called Day of
open door on airport Karlovy Vary, on the occasion of the 90th
anniversary of the first landing made at our airport by Mr. Major. Holt.
Our event was focused not only on adults but especially on children. We
showed them not only aeronautical equipment, but also ground equipment
of the airport, the police and firefighters also had demonstrations for
children. We organized competitions for children and prepared a lot of
sightseeing flights on the aircraft of our air partners for their
winners. The real culmination of the program was the reconstruction of
the arrival of Mr. Major. Holta in period costumes using period
technology. In the attachment I would like to send you a few photos that
bring the event closer and we will be happy if these materials will be
interesting for you.”
Andrew Paton Holt had graduated from RMC in 1913 and was working as a stockbroker when the First World War broke out. He was one of the original members of the 14th (RMR) battalion having been formally enrolled in Valcartier in September 1914. His attestation papers were signed by none other than Captain Francis Scrimger, who would go on to earn the Victoria Cross eight months later.
According to the RMC 1965 Yearbook, writing after his death:
Major Andrew Holt died from a heart attack in London, England, on 12 September, 1964. He was one of the three sons of Sir Herbert Holt. A younger brother G.Holt, also an ex-cadet, died several years ago. Andrew Holt attended RMC from 1909 to 1913 and on graduation entered the business world. On the outbreak of War in 1914 he joined the 14th Battalion and served throughout the war in various staff appointments. He had a rare business acumen and was one of the wealthiest men in Canada. His financial interests were in banking, films, electrical power, newspapers,hotels, chemicals and other fields in both Canada and England. He served in several of the British Ministries as an adviser. He was a life member of the RMC Club.
You can read more about Major Holt here.