Commander Jensen’s excellent, not so very good, lucky day!

I never knew Aircraft Commander, Don Bee Jensen, as “Doc.” I knew him for most of my thirty-two year airline career as Don, respecting him as a pilot and a very fine guy, one of many fine guys in the industry. During that period he never once mentioned this harrowing incident that took place so Read More …

“Bury Me in Silk, Upside Down”

“Bury Me in Silk, Upside Down” Prologue: “Life depends on a single thread,” is the motto of the Caterpillar Club honoring the debt owed to the silkworm. The worm, a caterpillar, produced silk used to make early parachutes practical as lifesaving devices. To escape the inability of an airplane to continue flying, for whatever reason, Read More …

FLETCHER

FLETCHER: To Kitty from Uncle Donald For the Memory Tree On Saturday, March 17th 2018, I met someone who wasn’t there in a physical sense but was ever present in spirit. Family and friends all called him Fletcher. Why I never met him isn’t important but the fact I hadn’t is my loss. My heart Read More …

“A Glorious Bellanca”

Giuseppe Mario Bellanca was an Italian-American airplane designer and builder who created the first enclosed-cabin monoplane in the United States in 1922. Missed opportunity with Lindbergh – In late 1926, an enterprising Charles Lindbergh had convinced sponsors to back him on an attempt to win the $25,000 Orteig Prize for a non-stop transatlantic flight. He Read More …

“Poverty Flats”

“POVERTY FLATS” Cupcake & Snowball: The animal, in the dim light of a fractured moon, gingerly stepped his way through an ill kept barbed wire fence. It was the only barrier found between his native country and Northwest Montana. The Canadian Eskimo dog unknowingly wandered into a small community known locally as Poverty Flats. Not Read More …

Good Hands

The Art of Good Touch The artful pilot will often be referred to as having “good hands.” An aircraft is equipped with three flight control elements. The rudder is controlled by rudder pedals on the floor in front of each pilot and they control, obviously, the rudder. It is located at the rear end of Read More …

Air California

Long Range Cruise: Following my nearly ten years of hopping between various airlines my closet was now filling up with underused uniforms. During this period I’d gained some great flying experience to various corners of the globe and decided it was now time to commit to a long-range employment strategy. Fortunately, in 1978, the Airline Read More …

55 King Sugar

Lockheed Lodestar, N 55 King Sugar Kelly-Springfield Tire Company Cumberland, Maryland calling: My decision to move on from Holiday Inns flying was motivated primarily by family necessity. I didn’t want to be away from home as much and for so long, because my new wife and I were expecting a child in late summer. I Read More …

Wake Up Now

Wake Up Now It happens. You never forget it but it happens. It happens more than you can imagine and it isn’t a forgettable experience. After more than sixty years the memory is still fresh in my mind. Terry Lipski, briefly a boyhood friend, disappeared one day. Terry arrived in our neighborhood – I’m guessing Read More …