A film based on the life and career of legendary bush pilot pioneer Wilfred “Wop” May has been named the best documentary short film at the Edmonton International Film Festival. Blind Ambition: The Story Wop May covers the colourful and, at times, world famous exploits of May, who was a First World War pilot and was among the first aviation entrepreneurs to serve the North. His Commercial Airways was based in Fort McMurray and operated regular mail, freight and passenger service as far as the MacKenzie Delta using Fairchild and Junkers aircraft on wheels, floats and skis.
“He was a guy who was fading into history and we wanted to bring his memory back,” said Tom Robinson, the film’s co-director told Fort McMurray Today. “Not only was he a hero, but he was a hero who had to sacrifice things. He didn’t get to spend as much time at home as he would have liked. Part of our message is that this is an amazing fellow who did amazing things for Canada and the world but it did come at a cost.” May hit the world stage when he became the first pilot to support a police manhunt when he helped the RCMP track down Albert Johnson, the “Mad Trapper” who shot two police officers, killing one, before fleeing into the bush.