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STICK SHAKER: SAYING GOODBYE TO A FRIEND

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I noted this week in Pireps, Nebraska’s Department of Aeronautics bi-monthly newsletter that one of their workhorses is on the auction block. The Department is putting their Cheyenne IIXL up for sale after many years of service. I have a lot of memories flying in that plane over the years and though none of it was PIC there were quite a few hours in the right seat – three to four hundred is a conservative guess!

oldfriend2The Department purchased the aircraft in 1986 and my first flight in Kilo Victor was fairly soon thereafter as a member of the Governor’s executive protection detail. In fact, one of my first flights was accompanying the Governor on a trip to

California. It would be a different governor later on that would suggest that, as a pilot, I start sitting in the right seat, especially if I was going to be on the flight anyway as part of the security detail. That would be a tradition, if you will, that continued into the first term of a third governor I served under – the Governor that eventually named me Director of the Nebraska Department of Aeronautics.

Although I loved flying in the Cheyenne, what I will continue to miss most about those hours was the time spent with the very professional and talented pilots that have flown for the Department over the years – the ones I got to know so well having spent so many hours with them in the cockpit. You can sell the aircraft, but the memories will always be with me and, I suspect, for those in the Department that flew the ole girl.

 

Categories: News
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