Airmail: “There Are No Happy Endings” Airport Damage at KOJC

Airmail: “There Are No Happy Endings” Airport Damage at KOJC

Just wanted to drop you a note of thanks for your emotional editorial in the April editorial. (Editor’s Briefing, April 2017) Your feelings of loss and joy of having one of your airplanes survive a horrific storm brought a tear to my eye. And your wonderful description about the wonder, amazement, frustration, worry, and achievement when we are back on the ground was spot on! I commend you for such a heartfelt article!

And of course I would be remiss if I didn’t say I was “offended” by the “Commander is a Pilot’s Airplane” on the next page, as I have been flying a King Air for almost 21 years now. It certainly is a good passenger plane but my King Air has been a heck of a ride for me as an ol’ grandpa fortunate enough to own one for as long as I have.

Keep up the good work, you make me smile and occasionally shed a tear!

Neil R. Hise

Belen, N.M. 

read your piece on your local airport being hit by destructive winds. My T-28 was being inspected at KPGD when the town and airport were destroyed by Hurricane Charlie in August of 2004. Dozens of planes were destroyed, a DC-3 “flew” itself over a mile away. A brand new major hangar collapsed. A dozen Porsche Mooneys being converted to IO-540’s ceased to exist. Incredibly my plane survived in an older hangar, though the back of the building was torn away. The damage to the town was similar. I performed in the annual airshow the next April and the town was still far from repaired and the blue tarps protecting roofs were everywhere as you flew overhead. But by the next year’s show things were largely back to normal. Pilots and Floridians are a hardly bunch and we got through it. I’m glad your mother’s plane survived. And I hope your airport is back to normal soon.

Todd Stuart

Key West, FL

really enjoyed the whole April issue. Kevin Ware and Tom Turner were outstanding as usual, but really on top this issue. I was in the U.S. Coast Guard in Traverse City in the early 60s, and it was my best post in my six years of active duty, but not the winter so much.

One spring day in 1960, a week after Gary Powers was shot down by the Russians in his U-2, the base loudspeaker came on and informed everyone that an Air Force U-3 was landing and to wave him to a parking spot. Well the whole base turned out waiting to see a spy plane of sorts. No one really knew what a U-3 was, but we all thought it must be a spy plane. So this nice blue Cessna 310 taxis by and no one pays any attention to him. The base commander had a little egg on his face over that incident.

Dick Welsh

Seattle, WA and Thermal, CA

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