After millenniums of world history, I (meet me on facebook) feel privileged to have been born after Dec. 17, 1903, the date on which Wilbur and Orville Wright successfully accomplished the world’s first recorded powered flight. While many take flight for granted, or even consider it a dreaded necessary evil, I can not view it as anything less than a miracle. After piloting my Piper Tri-Pacer for hundreds of hours, and now moving on to a Cherokee, I still look forward to the sensation of freedom that comes each time we climb into the nothingness of a blue clear sky. I find flight a truly real experience in a world of phoniness.
As with any feelings of reverence or awe, there is no way the emotions can be passed on to others. Yet it is my hope that with this site I might spark an interest or encourage someone to pursue the miracle of flight.
My enjoyment of flight has increased even more with the addition of my new co-pilot. After several years of inactivity working part time as a consultant for a number of local companies and lately as an advisor to RCN, my wife Sue is putting on her private pilot wings again. Whether Sue and I are flying Two Niner Juliet somewhere together, or the Cherokee is taking me home to her, both the flight and the arrival at our destination are a joy.
Our Cherokee 180, N9529J, is a four-place airplane that was manufactured in 1966 and is powered by a 180 horsepower Lycoming O-360 engine. It cruises at 125+ miles per hour and carries 800 pounds in addition to 50 gallons of fuel. It has a STOL kit and the basic IFR equipment, though a handheld GPS is our usual method of navigation.
My first airplane was a Piper Tri-Pacer, N8943D. It was purchased in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1980 and I flew it until a taxi accident in April of 2000. We spent over 1600 hours in the air together and had some great adventures, many of which are included in my book, Confessions of a Pilot.