Long-lived as they are, airplanes connect us to our past. One airplane connected to my past lives on. N757PU is a Cessna 182RG that belonged to my primary flight instructor, John Julian, and his wife Bernice. For decades the two were aviation fixtures in northwestern Pennsylvania. It seemed John taught the whole region to fly–and then some. He died last year, leaving Bernie with the task of dealing with the 182. Understandably, she was reluctant to part with it, but knew it would be better flying often. John, also an A&P, would want it that way. So how fitting that one of John’s former students, Rick Keys, would buy it from Bernie. Rick and I were in flight training and ground school at about the same time back in the 1970s. He went on to a career in the Navy. Rick sent me an email recently admitting the purchase was made in part because of the connection to John. Bernie was in tears as she signed the bill of sale–sad to see it go, but happy to see it “stay in the family,” as it were. Congrats, Rick. Take care of that old girl–our connection to the innocence of those early flying days.
What airplanes have touched your life and link you to the past?
Tags: Tom Haines