FLIGHT #2 IN TOM CASEY'S RESTORED 1951 GRUMMAN ALBATROSS—On 11/30/12, seven seaplane lovers (six of us pilots) climbed on board Cap'n Casey's bird at the Danbury CT Municipal Airport, took off, and flew to nearby Candlewood Lake for what I like to call: "Splash & Dash." Candlewood is a LONG lake and the shape allows Tom to gently SPLASH down—add power to get this Rescue Seaplane "up on the step"—then DASH for a quarter mile up the center of the lake. The Albatross uses two big rumbling radial engines (they're basically B-17 engines) and it can carry up to 30 people. Tom describes it as looking "big as a house." So imagine standing on shore and watching a big really-noisy house rocketing up the lake at 40mph—actually faster than the top speed of the World War II PT boats. This video shows Tom repeating this maneuver three times before departing the lake for our return to Danbury. Watch the last Splash & Dash carefully and you can spot a lone fisherman drifting nearby in his tiny dinghy. He's probably shaking his fist and cursing us for being a bunch of raging assholes—as every fish within 100 yards of him goes into cardiac arrest.
NOTE: Tom Casey is a retired American Airlines captain (flew the Boeing 777.) He's now a successful novelist whose books often put aviation up front and on stage. I highly recommend his "Stranger's Gate" and "Human Error"—both available on Amazon. LINK: amazon.com/Strangers-Gate-Tom-Casey/dp/0765311909
—John Emmerling, NYC
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