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» Smilin' Jack   » Specific Airline Discussions   » TWA   » More proof that TWA was a good airline.

Author Topic: More proof that TWA was a good airline.
Subsonic Transport
Post Captain
Member # 2139

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I came upon this article about a TWA pilot. A nice article.

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Bob Ritchie
Post Captain
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Jerry is a great guy. We worked together doing aeromedical/training/professional standards projects at TWA.

We could always count on one another for mutual support when working on behalf of the TWA pilots and keeping management honest.

He was a model airman and friend. Our airline, indeed the industry, was better for his selfless giving to others.

Just before he retired he remarked to me..."every time I see a B-747 taxi by or in the air.....I cannot believe that I get to fly that magnificent airplane." I think all of us who have a passion for flight can identify.

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Junior Poster
Member # 2956

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I'm sure Capt Lawler is a fine gentleman and pilot and probably met him over the many TWA years...

As noted, 1964 was the heyday for commercial aviation...Also heyday for many Draft Boards around our country waiting for us to graduate from high school/college....

Interested to know how Capt Lawler avoided those friendly folks in 1964 while the rest of us souls were standing at attention in front of those boards waiting for our orders to some far off place....

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Capn Eddie Ricketyback
Post Captain
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Originally posted by boomer1941:
Interested to know how Capt Lawler avoided those friendly folks in 1964 while the rest of us souls were standing at attention in front of those boards waiting for our orders to some far off place....

Well let's see now... Capt. Lawler was born in 1938, which made him 26 yrs. old in 1964. Since it appears the draft age was 18-25 in those days that made him a little too old. Also, he had gotten married in 1963 which, according to this policy from this History of Conscription in the US:
President Kennedy's decision to send military troops to Vietnam as "advisors" was a signal that Selective Service Director Lewis B. Hershey needed to visit the Oval Office. From that visit emerged two wishes of JFK with regard to conscription. The first was that the names of married men with children should occupy the very bottom of the callup list. Just above them should be the names of men who are married. This Presidential policy, however, was not to be formally encoded into Selective Service Status. Men who fit into these categories became known as Kennedy Husbands. When President Lyndon Johnson decided to rescind this Kennedy policy, there was a last-minute rush to the altar by thousands of American couples.
So, it looks like Capt. Lawler barely squeaked under the wire here, both by being born a little too early and getting married at the right time.

Personally, I couldn't wait until I was 17 years old to drop out of high school, get the hell out of the rural community I was suffocating in and join the Navy during the Korean War. Not being a fool, I knew that there was little risk of combat in that branch of the service at that time for enlisted sailors. However, I had no problem with serving as a turret gunner on Patrol Bombers. I was stationed in Brunswick, ME, and I can honestly say that not a single North Korean got past Brunswick while I was there. Subsequently served a total of almost 12 years in the Navy & Air Force before getting a job with TWA.

I treasure my military service, as I'm sure I had a lot better life on account of it, not least because it provided me the training I needed for my TWA career, but hold no resentment toward those who avoided it. I'm sure all service experiences are not equal, but I look back fondly on those days, and still have many friends from both branches of the service that I still communicate with, dating back 60 years.

Here's a little history of my service.

[ 08-18-2016, 11:35: Message edited by: Capn Eddie Ricketyback ]

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Prop Wash
Member # 381

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Captain Billy

Great to see you posting Capt’n. AND enjoyed your story and pictures. ....Just as no Koreans got past Brunswick while you served there, no Japanese warships or Zeros got up the Potomac River past the U.S.Naval Torpedo factory in Alexandria, Va. during my tour of duty there as a 17 year old apprentice machinist. The pay there was pretty good. Sixteen dollars a week, which paid for flying lessons and kept me out of trouble while yearning for that 18th birthday and the start of a military career.

It could probably be said that one of the biggest differences between the tens of thousands of airline HOW each of us got there. Those stories would no doubt make far more interesting reading than any accomplishments in our later years (as pilots). The story of your military service being a perfect example.

private Kramer reporting, Sir!

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