Saturday Morning Re-run for this week. As I’ve gotten older and older I’m less likely to talk to young soldiers because I feel like one of Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders conversing with a paratrooper from the 101st the night before the Normandy invasion. However I do think it’s interesting that our military still relies on the C-130 Hercules – the aircraft that figure so prominently in this post – 35+ years later…and it was considered “long in the tooth” even then in 1982.
Service members who fail to complete flight training rarely go on to spectacular careers – at least that was the common wisdom I picked up prior to being assigned to Officer Rotary Wing Aviators Course 44-79 in August of 1979. That “common wisdom” came back to haunt me when I received a medical disqualification the following April. I was passing all the academic courses and could hold my own in the cockpit, but had developed a vision problem during training that could possibly mean trouble during flight during darkness or instrument conditions. I was left hanging for three months before getting a final notice and while I made all sorts of jokes about seeing-eye dogs in the cockpit there was nothing to laugh about when I got the official word that I was not going to be spending a career flying helicopters.
I was angry. I was sad. I was…
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