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Articles for category Human Interest




Jan
09
2017

Meet a Rotorcraft Pro: Simon Whitely

Posted by Admin

RPMN: Have you ever had an “Oh, crap!” moment in a helicopter? Can you summarize what happened? One of my “moments” was during my first instrument training flight aboard an RN Westland Wessex Mk 5. We’d just departed the air station and were flying in IMC at 2,000 feet on the dials. Suddenly, there was a loud bang! The aircraft made an uncommanded yaw of about 50 degrees to the right. Having recovered with all indications normal, my instructor and I made a precautionary landing to a field. Once on the ground, we learned that a Royal Navy Sea Harrier jet had just suffered a mid-air collision with a helicopter and had also made a successful emergency landing. The impact broke 6 inches off the top of the jet’s vertical fin. Our Wessex seemed fine, but upon inspection it was found to be 3 inches out of alignment along the tail cone and had to be trucked back to the airfield. Another interesting day at the office! [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Dec
26
2016

EXECUTIVE WATCH: KURT ROBINSON

Posted by Admin

When doing a profile on Kurt Robinson, plan on an early interview—as in 7:00 a.m. early. That’s when he’ll be taking your call. Of course, the chairman and president of Robinson Helicopter Company will have already been in his office about an hour, reading the Wall Street Journal, answering emails, and talking to contacts in Europe. Still, he understands that some people just start late. Robinson is motivated to work early so that he can get home early. “I like to leave the office by 5:00 so that I can spend time with my family,” he says. “We always try to eat dinner together. Sometimes I get out of here at 6:00, but that’s generally a bad thing. I guard my time away from work as much as I can. I don’t really have a lot of time off, so when I do it’s really important to spend time with my wife and two kids.” And therein lies an insight into Robinson: The name is synonymous with both a pioneering aviation business and a proud family. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Nov
20
2016

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Rick Guthery

Posted by Admin

RPMN: What is your current position? I’m currently the training and standardization commander at the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Department Air Rescue Bureau. Additionally, I am a helicopter designated pilot examiner with the South Florida Flight Standards District Office. For the last 21 years, I’ve also operated my own business, Helicopter Partners Inc. RPMN: Tell me about your first flight. The first flight I remember with my hands on the controls was in the early 1970s in a Cessna 182. We flew from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas. I was not tall enough to see over the dashboard of the airplane, so my dad pointed to the altimeter and heading instruments and told me what numbers to look at and hold. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out so well. We were all over the sky and my mom and sister quickly got air sick. It was a short-lived flight attempt, but I was definitely hooked on flying. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest



Nov
07
2016

Executive Watch - Paul Daigle of AAL USA/Blackhall Aerospace

Posted by Admin

Now a platoon leader and air mission commander, his first combat tour was eight months. “Combat is 90 percent boring, just flying in circles, and 10 percent of the worst that could ever happen, but I had the opportunity to fight in some cool places (including the Battle of Fallujah). Being an air mission commander of a team of Apaches is probably the coolest thing that anyone could ever do.” He also gained knowledge that would later serve him well in his future civilian career. “I was very tied into aircraft maintenance. I’d go fly with my warrant officers for up to eight hours, and then I’d go spend the rest of the day on the flightline. I valued my maintenance guys and I developed a very sound understanding of maintenance operations.” [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest categoryCompany Profiles



Sep
06
2016

Meet a Rotorcraft Pro: Rob Ardy

Posted by Admin

RPMN: If you could give only one piece of advice to a new helicopter pilot, what would it be? I see new pilots get so discouraged so quickly in their journey to fly for a living. My piece of advice would be to not listen to the naysayers. There are going to be plenty of people who are going to tell you why you can’t do something, or they will say, “Things don’t work that way.” Ignore them. Push forward, seek wise counsel, and make good decisions based on the research you’ve done. A lot of the negativity in this industry​ comes from a small group of people. Just stay positive! [Read More...]



Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryHuman Interest



Aug
29
2016

Flying Through Hell … Again and Again Fort McMurray Helicopters Fight ‘The Beast’

Posted by Admin

The fire started small on May Day 2016. However, the traditional May 1 holiday soon turned—and burned—into a distress call. Unfortunately, the winds were too high and the ground too dry. Within hours, more and more acres were devoured by flames with red-hot embers blowing ahead of the leading edge. In time, the fast moving fire grew too hot for firefighters to approach. So intense was its temperature that it even began creating its own heat lightning. Eventually, emergency personnel had another name for the Fort McMurray wildfire: The Beast. [Read More...]

Fort_McMurray_Fire_00_OPENER.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_01.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_02.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_03.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_04.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_05.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_06.jpg  Fort_McMurray_Fire_07.jpg  Landscape_view_of_wildfire_near_Highway_63_in_south_Fort_McMurray_(cropped).jpg 

Categories: categoryHelicopter Sectors categoryHuman Interest



Aug
22
2016

Executive Watch - Mike Stanberry of Metro Aviation

Posted by Admin

“I was oil field trash.” When an interview starts with a quote like that, good stories are in store. However, Mike Stanberry, the president, CEO, and sole owner of Metro Aviation headquartered in Shreveport, Louisiana, is much more than just a storyteller. Rather, he has seized opportunities throughout an eventful career to create one of the rotorcraft industry’s premier companies. When President Obama implies that owners didn’t build their businesses, you get the distinct impression that Stanberry would reply, “Yes, Mr. President, we did.” [Read More...]



Categories: categoryCompany Profiles categoryHuman Interest



Jul
04
2016

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Bill Orvis

Posted by Admin

RPMN: What is your current position? I’ve just recently accepted the position of chief pilot at Sundance Helicopters in Las Vegas. This means I’m now responsible for the hiring, training, and scheduling of pilots under CFR part 135. We have anywhere between 35 and 60 pilots, depending on the time of year, which makes it a major challenge to balance the needs of the operation versus the needs of the human operating the helicopter. I work with a bunch of good people though, so I’m looking forward to leading the troops for the foreseeable future. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest categoryTraining categoryHelicopter Sectors



Jun
13
2016

Executive Watch - Chris Emerson of Airbus Helicopters

Posted by Admin

Being the president of Airbus Helicopters is one of the great responsibilities in the rotorcraft world. Over 23,000 employees generate over $6 billion in revenue while manufacturing and delivering some of the top flagship aircraft in the industry. The leader of this global OEM must be driven, yet calm and calculating. So one wonders: Would Chris Emerson be the president of Airbus Helicopters had he not seen a photo of a naked man wearing a résumé to cover his front and backside? Admittedly, that’s quite a question, and one that requires travelling to find the answer. Which is exactly what that newspaper photo inspired young Emerson, then a student at the University of Alabama in the early 1990s, to do. He recalls, “Unemployment at that time was rather high. This guy in San Francisco had posted his résumé on two billboards that covered his front and rear. I thought: Wow, is it that desperate? What am I going to do to stand out?” [Read More...]



Categories: categoryHuman Interest



May
09
2016

EXECUTIVE WATCH: JOHN FRASCA Family and Flexibility in Flight Simulation

Posted by Admin

When talking to Frasca International President and CEO John Frasca, one quickly discerns that not only does F begin his last name, but that letter coincides with other words relevant to who he is and what he does: Family and Flexibility. It’s telling that the current generation of Frascas do not shine the light of success on themselves. Rather, the company website and brochure only speak of the founding father. Not even John Frasca is profiled. In an age of self-adulation and promotion, that may seem somewhat quaint … and refreshing. However, this lack of limelight is not surprising when you hear the humble way the son’s promotion to leadership in 2011 was announced to Frasca International’s staff—and to John Frasca himself. “We were just having a summer company party out at the airport with all of the employees, and Dad picked up the microphone and said, ‘Oh, by the way everybody, John’s taking over; he’s going to be president,’” says Frasca. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryCompany Profiles categoryHuman Interest


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