DC-3 80th Anniversary

December 17, 2015 marks the 80th anniversary of the amazing DC-3 aircraft. It seems impossible that a design created all those years ago remains relevant in our modern society. It has been said that the only replacement for a DC-3 is another DC-3. Well, Happy Birthday to the Octogenarian of the Air!


Airline Board of Directors

We turn the clock back almost 35 years in order to “churn” up some interesting points. Nicholas Bredimus was the youngest Corporate Officer in the airline industry in 1980. At age 29, he ran the Information Systems division of Republic Airlines, a predecessor airline of Northwest Airlines (now Delta).

Board of Directors of Republic Airlines in 1980
1980 annual report

Hal N. Carr*
Chairman of the Board
Republic Airlines

Cecil A. Beasley, Jr.
Partner Ballard & Beasley

Eric Bramley
Retired Editor
Aviation Daily
(aviation industry news service)

G.F. DeCoursin*
Chairman of the Board
Media Graphics
(commercial graphic arts)

Frank W. Hulse*
Vice Chairman of the Board
Republic Airlines

Alton F. Irby, Jr.
(Insurance Consultant and

G. Gunby Jordan
Chairman of the Board
The Jordan Company
(real estate and insurance)

John M. Lawrence III
Partner -Lawrence, Thornton,
Payne and Watson (attorneys)

William R. Lummis
Chairman of the Board
Summa Corporation
(real estate Investments. evieuor:
hotels and recreation)

Daniel F. May*
Republic Airlines

Theodore R. Miles
Stange Co.
(food products)

Morton B. Phillips
Chairman of the Board
Westland Capital Corporation
(business investments)

G. Frank Purvis, Jr.
Chairman of the Board
Pan American Life Insurance Co.

William E. Rankin
Summa Corporation
(real estate investments. aviation,
hotels and recreation)

Joseph E. Rapkin
Partner – Foley and Lardner

Henry M. Ross
Ross Industnes
(machinery manufacturer)

Bernard Sweet*
Vice Chairman of the Board
Republic Airlines

Richard A. Trippeer, Jr.
Union Planters National Bank

Wm. Bew White, Jr.*
Partner-Bradley, Arant,
Rose and White (attorneys)

Kenneth B. Willett*
Chairman of the Board
First Financial Savings and
Loan Association

Frank M. Young III
Partner-North Haskell Slaughter
Young and Lewis (attorneys)

* Executive Committee

Hal N. Carr
Chairman of the Board

Frank W. Hulse
Vice Chairman of the Board

Bernard Sweet
Vice Chairman of the Board

Daniel F. May

Robert L. Gren
Senior Vice President-
Maintenance and Engineering

Kenneth L. Hubertus
Senior Vice President-Customer

George J. Kamas
Senior Vice President-Inflight

A. L. Maxson
Senior Vice President-Finance

David E. Moran
Senior Vice President-Marketing

J. F. Nixon
Senior Vice President-Corporate

George F. Wallis
Senior Vice President-Flight

J. Kenneth Courtenay
Vice President-Route

Edward A. Dingivan
Vice President-Federal

John P. Dow
Vice President and Secretary

Michael D. Meyer
Vice President and Controller

Gowan J. Miller
Vice President-Industrial Relations

A. E. Warner
Vice President-Maintenance

Charlotte G. Westberg
Staff Vice President

W. H. Mackinnon

Dorman W. Atwood
Assistant Vice President-
Regulatory Compliance

Nicholas Bredimus
Assistant Vice President-
Information Systems

Joseph W. Ettel
Assistant Vice President-Labor
Relations and Assistant Secretary

Gramer D. Foster
Assistant Vice President-Flying

Earl D. Jackson
Assistant Vice President- Technical

Robert P. Johnson
Assistant Vice President-Flight

Katherine M. Leddick
Assistant Vice President-Inflight

John E. Manger
Assistant Vice President-
Long-range Planning

William E. Oakes
Assistant Vice President-Economic

Charles B. Vesper
Assistant Vice President-Schedules
and Tariffs

Walter E. Nielsen
Assistant Treasurer

Raymond J. Rasenberger
Assistant Secretary

Ralph Strangis
Assistant Secretary

More Aviation Trivia

Another friend wrote in reply “The story that wasn’t told in this write up was….

Boeing was in a demo fly off with Douglas for some government orders…. the Air Force was very impressed with the Douglas jet… and the Boeing folks on the ground radioed their test pilot ( who was in the air ) what the air force reaction was… the test pilot said well tell them to have Douglas do this… and he barrel rolled the airplane…. the FAA pulled his ticket for the stunt…but Boeing sold the airplane. I have been told by pilots that if you know what you are doing you can barrel roll a jet and not spill a drink on a passengers tray !!!!

I saw the original 707 as it sat in the bone yard in Tucson waiting to go to the Smithsonian once a proper show hanger was built..

Also the air force one 707 that Reagan used and is on display at his library in Simi Valley was completely restored by Boeing retirees they also have his Marine 1 on display…..

At the Boeing museum in Seattle on static display is a supersonic passenger jet…. once in PHX one left from Sky Harbor on a flight to London ( the group came back on the QE 2 the noise level was unbelievable…”

Boeing 707 60th Anniversary

An old friend just emailed me this fascinating account of the Boeing 707 at a pivotal point in Aviation History. I’ll introduce the topic and lead you to the original blog. Happy reading and perhaps reminiscing!

July 15th, 2014 was the 60th Anniversary of the inaugural flight of the Boeing 707, an aircraft that was poised to change the world of aviation. July 15, 1954, was a Day of Monumental Change. Aviation change, that is. World change. Today is the Anniversary of that event – an event that changed the course of commercial aviation, the world, and certainly of the Boeing Airplane Company.

Boeing 707 as flown by Pan Am

Pan Am

It is the 60th Anniversary of the First Flight of the 707 Prototype – the Dash 80. The product of a bunch of engineers who probably lived in Bellevue, Washington, wore wing-tipped shoes with argyle socks , white shirts with pocket protectors, and carried K & E slipsticks (slide rules.) They produced a machine that – on a dozen levels – changed the world.

But the first flight of this matriarch of Boeing’s long line of descendant jet transports, as advanced as it was, might have led to a very different outcome. And, a very different Boeing.

The story of the $16 million gamble, betting the company by building the 707 with Boeing’s own funds and no customers, has been told often. But, there was more to the story.

The rest of the 707 story…

Delta’s Gerald Grinstein to Retire – Again

Delta Airlines is reporting that CEO Gerald Grinstein will retire after the carrier emerges from bankruptcy early in 2007. By my count, this is Jerry’s fourth retirement: First, he left Western Airlines as CEO in 1987. Second, was his retirement as CEO at Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp in 1995. Third, he retired as Chairman of Agilent Technologies in 2002. And now, Delta will give Jerry the proverbial Gold Watch. All this is proof that you cannot keep a good man down.

Newsline or Advertising?

Sometimes you cannot tell the difference between genuine news and planted advertisements. The authors of planted material are really very good. I’m sure that you can recall reading a supposed article in a slick publication only to discover its paid advertising tag in small print. One case in point is this story about Farelogix. After reading it, you must wonder about the whole organization running this web site and all the companies mentioned within. And, there is no tag to warn you.