Dave Paddon - Storyteller

Dave Paddon


A retired airline pilot, Dave is a writer and performer of recitations and tall tales with an interest in Newfoundland and Labrador history.

Dave hails from Northwest River in central Labrador. He is descended from two generations of pioneer doctors/nurses who travelled the Labrador coast by dog team in the winter and auxiliary ketch in the summer, providing medical services and building the social infrastructure which was so badly needed at the time. Perhaps in a spirit of rebelliousness, Dave chose aviation over medicine and flew fixed-wing aircraft as well as helicopters over the same territory in the late seventies and early eighties. He flew with Air Canada for several years and has now retired. He is a great storyteller and well known throughout the province for his recitations.

Dave is knowledgeable about the geography and history of coastal Labrador from his years of bush flying in the area; he has a particular enthusiasm for the Torngat Mountains. His grandparents operated a small hospital on the coast, and he enjoys relating the history of that institution as well as the incredible hardship of dog team medical patrols—which could last for weeks and covered thousands of miles. He is extremely fortunate in that he has a large volume of family correspondence covering the years 1912 to 1982.

Dave wrote his first recitation in 2007 and has now written forty-five. Five of these have been published in handmade chapbooks and his work is available on two CDs or through electronic download. His recitation Ralph: Flying Hound was recently released as an illustrated children’s book. He also released a collection of thirteen tall tales in a book entitled Half the lies you tell me are not true! Dave lives in St. John's with his wife Kim.

After school, Dave attended flying school in Moncton New Brunswick and then flew fixed wing and rotor wing aircraft for forty years. His bush flying took place in Labrador and he flew international routes with Air Canada and Canadian Airlines.

Dave retired in 2016 and is now busy operating an arts centre in the summer as well as performing at festivals and fundraisers year-round.

Dave Paddon Waterfront And Airplane