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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

Type rated on A330, B747-400, B747, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Vintage Women in Aviation

Women fly! They walk on Wings! 
They do amazing things! 

An amazing woman in honor of Women in Aviation Week. Reno Nevada this week. Join me!

Gladys Ingalls 1924
Without a Parachute 

Mid air repair... 

"Gladys Ingalls was a member of a barnstorming troupe called the 13 Black Cats in the 1920's. Ingles was a wing walker. In this film, she shows her fearlessness in classic barnstorming fashion to save an airplane that has lost one of its main landing gear wheels. Ingalls is shown with a replacement wheel being strapped to her back and then off she goes as "Up She Goes," a duet from the era, provides the soundtrack."

She died at 82. 

Tuesday, March 20, 2018


And Aviation Safety 

Captain Jim Wright sends me the most interesting articles. He was a harbor ship captain, and continues in training, learning and discussions on automation challenges in his world. However, they are similar in ours too. Captain Wright was a Friday Flyer in 2014, where you can read more about the man behind the words. Today he sent me an interesting email. Enjoy the great read, as there is much to think about. 

Captain Jim Wright

"I just read the recent well done CAMM articles by Capt. Lloyd, Father Oubre and Capt. Cartner -- regarding autonomous ships and “shipmastering”. From a harbor pilot’s perspective, these articles seem to be posing the question, “What is the intended effect of automation on shiphandling and the ship’s Master?”

At one extreme you could say that automation is intended to replace all traces of human endeavor. At the other extreme you could say that automation will eventually prove too expensive and eventually unreliable. 

Maybe we’re missing the point here. The point being that the success of human endeavor over past centuries has been a function of the satisfaction derived from personal achievement. The question then becomes, if the satisfaction realized by hands-on shiphandling is replaced by “artificial intelligence”, what will be the effect on human endeavor going forward?

Pursuit of an answer might lead to the airline industry where Gen-X and ultimately pilotless passenger aircraft seems to be a goal. Let’s look at some examples. Although “Miracle on the Hudson” caught substantial public attention, other passenger jets have made successful water or off-airport landings without power due to the pilots’ hand-flying skills. And then a fully functional 777 crashed on the airport apparently due to lack of hand-flying skills. 

Something to consider. Currently there are quite a few older shipmasters and pilots who are proficient in traditional shiphandling skills to include anchor dredging and docking without tugs or thruster assist. This group is going to be depleted through attrition, taking those skills with them. The common response is that automation eliminates the need for preserving these skills. Defense Exhibit 1 might be “Garuda Indonesia (737-300) Flight 421’s water landing with no engines, no assistance, no electronic guidance and no hydraulic or electrical power.” Without hand-flying skills, 59 souls most likely would not have survived." Captain Jim Wright. 

Can we afford to have our pilots
lose their flying skills and 
depend solely on automation? 

Enjoy the Journey!
XOX Karlene 

Monday, March 19, 2018

Trump Shuttle!

A Part of History

Calling All Eastern and 
Trump Shuttle Employees
EAL Radio Show Broadcast
Episode 357 -
 March 19, 2018

“Eastern/Trump Shuttle”

Our next EAL Radio Show on March 19, 2018, Episode 357 is “The Eastern/Trump Shuttle” or the name as it was originally known as when it began April 30, 1961 was the “Eastern Air Lines Shuttle”. This flight originated out of New York City, Boston, Washington, D.C. and Newark. The shuttle's slogan if you remember was “Imagine Life Without Us”. We are calling Shuttle employees to join us on the broadcast, so please send us your name and telephone number to:

The specialty of this Eastern Air Shuttle was:
  • Reservations were not required ahead of time
  • Passengers just showed up at the terminal
  • Airline tickets were bought on board from Flight Attendant
  • Missed Flight – no problem another Shuttle was in an hour
  • Different location, no problem hourly Shuttle Flights were in each of these cities.

Listen to how and why this money making Shuttle that fulfilled the needs of travel for many business people ended for Eastern. How on October 1988, the Eastern Air Shuttle's ground rights were ended and 17 aircraft were sold to Donald Trump and the beginning of the Trump Shuttle. Discover that the dream of traveling any time without reservations to these destinations still exists and what carrier has the routes now.

Call in to share your experience of flying on it; or enlighten us as to how it was to work any of those routes and share more memories with us on March 19, 2018. 

Call-in number is 
at 7:00 P. M. EDT 
or listen in by clicking the hyperlink:

Enjoy the Journey!
XOX Karlene 

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene 

Friday, March 16, 2018

Characters in Aviation

Friday's Fabulous Flyer
Mike Jarrell is a 48 year old former race pilot and current league caretaker for Central City Jet Racing League. Mike’s duties as a caretaker include delivering breakfast to race pilots at their dorms Monday to Friday, fueling, inspecting, and maintaining planes, as well as maintaining the facilities at the league airfield (changing light bulbs, washing floors, and oiling door hinges). 
Mike has spent the majority of his life in Texas, but is living at Central City Jet Racing League’s airfield during the NJRA season. At one time, Mike raced with the Dallas Jet Racing League, but his flying career came to an end when deploying a faulty ejection seat left him with lifelong pain. Mike walks with a slight limp as a result of his injuries.
After recovering from the ejection incident, Mike was offered the opportunity to stay in the NJRA in a non-flying position. He decided to become a league caretaker because of his love for planes and jet racing, giving him a chance to be involved, despite being unable to fly. 
Mike is a Southern Baptist and maintains strong religious conservative views. He disapproves of Jay’scrossdressing and Irene’s homosexuality, albeit less openly in the case of Irene. He still treats Irene with respect because she gives good back massages. 

Jet Racer is coming soon!
And it it were to be a movie, 
Michael C. Hall (photo above) 
would make a perfect Mike Jarrell. 

Enjoy the journey!
XO Karlene

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Photos Needed

To Promote Aviation Safety

"Successful people are always looking for 
opportunities to help others. 
Unsuccessful people are always asking, 
'What's in it for me?'"
Brian Tracy

Last week Rachel Carson from an Airbus Company NAVBLUE, a flight operations and air traffic management solutions provider, contacted me regarding the aerial photo of KSAN I posted on my blog: San Diego

Rachel was inquiring about the use of the above photo for their charts to aid pilot orientation during operations at special pilot-in-command qualified aerodromes. Of course they could have it. In the interest of education, learning and safety, I had no problem sharing this with them. 

They need more photos!  

If anyone has photos of the following airport arrivals 
that you are willing to provide for a good cause, 
Please contact Rachel at 

United States 

KGUC Gunnison
KBUR Burbank
KDRO Durango
KFLG Flagstaff
KONT Ontario


MMGL Guadalajara
MMLT Loreto

Enjoy the Journey!
XO Karlene

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Plane that Don Built

Part of a Historic Debate

 Don Gagnon

"What A Thrill Building A Model Of The 
Historic Wright Brothers’ Airplane" 

Don Gagnon is one of the hosts each Monday night on the Eastern Airlines Broadcast. He also built an incredible plane and wrote about it. Don, continues to celebrate his love aviation whether building planes or discussing aviation topics. You can chat with him each Monday night on a live broadcast by calling 213-816-1611 at 7 pm Eastern time. Don wrote today's article and I am privileged to share it. 

Don Gagnon: 

"Much controversy has been discussed over time, as to who was the first in manned flight. According to Brazilian history, aviation pioneer Alberto Santos-Dumont was the first individual to ever successfully pilot an airplane. Even before the Wright Brothers! He flew a kite-like contraption with boxy wings called the “14-Bis” some 722 feet outside the city of Paris, France and then was hailed as the inventor of the first airplane all over Europe.

It was only later that the secretive Orville and Wilbur Wright flight that proved they had beaten Dumont at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina three years earlier on December 17, 1903. The conditions on that morning were prefect for flight-high; constant winds blowing from the North. At about 10:30 A.M. that morning, Orville lay down on the plane’s wing surface and brought the engine to life in preparation of launching it and himself into history.

Orville Wright piloted the first powered airplane 20 feet above a windswept beach in North Carolina. The flight lasted 12 seconds and covered 120 feet. Three more flights were made that day. The Wright 4 Cylinder Engine weighed 170 pounds, including the radiator, water and 1.5 gallons of gasoline. They also developed their own propeller which was 8.13 feet, and was 66% efficient. 

The wing span was 40 feet 4 inches, length 21 feet, and height 8 feet tall. The total weight of the machine was 605 pounds. The estimated speed of that flight was approximately 31 MPH. That mid-morning flight, December 17, 1903 at Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, was the start of an awesome era, a powered flight as we know it that was the beginning of flying. The Wright brothers (Orville & Wilbur) flew for the first time in history; a gas powered manned flying machine. 

When I assembled this model airplane, my memory immediately reflected on my 35 years in the airline business (30-year tenure at Eastern Airlines, and 5 years more at American Trans Air).

Looking back today at this phenomenon that happened 115 years later, we marvel at how far the industry has come, not to mention the millions of jobs created worldwide. The Wright brothers were groundbreakers, record-setters, and history-makers of what led to our future today; unmanned airplanes and helicopters; driverless autos; no steering bicycles…all powered without a person handling the controls inside. Awesome!

I can only close by saying, “Thank you, Orville & Wilbur.”