We were very honored to have Mr. Charles Shaw speak at our October meeting. Mr. Shaw gave a very moving account of his B-17 being shot down by a Me-109 and of his crew's capture. He was shot down during one of the last flights in his tour of duty in October 1943. During the hectic moments while attempting to bail out of the burning B-17 he said he wished he had not skipped the class on how to bail out of an aircraft and use the parachute (oh well, Mr. Shaw, we all have cut a class or two). Of interest to military buffs is the fact that the American and British parachutes and harnesses were not compatible. Several moments were lost trying to sort out who had which system while strapping the chutes on in an aircraft on fire. After the crew jumped, the German military had to fight their way into the crowd of civilians to rescue the downed airmen. Apparently some crews were not so lucky and did not reach a prison camp. After their capture he told of his four escape attempts and the punishments before being successful. The actual escape was an adventure by itself! One surprise is that his story was the inspiration for the movie The Great Escape, although Hollywood did take quite a few liberties with his accounts. Mr. Shaw's wife, Joyce, was instrumental in his escape, but you will have to talk to him to find out how: you wouldn't believe it. Not only was he an excellent speaker, his story captured everyone's attention. It was moving to hear history from one who helped make it. We invite Mr. and Mrs. Shaw to be our guests anytime.
MEMBERS - Although the cold and windy weather caused a low turnout at the WWI Replica Fly-in at Creve Coeur Airport, our information booth paid dividends. Two of our newest members, Mark and Paula Turrentine, learned about us from the event. We are also glad to welcome Sam and Wendy Bell, Terrance and Eileen Lahey and welcome back Dave Flavan to the Gateway Chapter! We are happy to welcome you and invite you all to join in the chapter meetings and fly-outs!
FLY-OUTS - Our October fly-out to the Air Force Museum has not taken place as I write this; therefore I can't tell you how it went (goes?) but it has become an annual event. The November fly-out will be to Mattoon, IL and will be an excellent trip for those wishing to make a shorter trip (an hour or less). Maybe Bill and Linda McCullough will come in their newly acquired Piper Colt!
CHAPTER LIBRARY - The Gateway chapter library has a new addition thanks to the generosity of Harry Schulz, Don Moonen and Carl Schaffner. Two King video tapes about learning to fly twin engine aircraft are now available, along with our many other tapes and a few books. Go by and see or call Tony Petruso (314-423-6644) to check out the library. He and Rosemary also bring it to some of our meetings - a big job!
SAFETY CORNER - We have all become accustomed to inspecting our aircraft for various nests and critters during the Fall months. I must admit that I was still quite surprised at reaching into, finding and awaking a possum in the box of rags and cleaning equipment in my hangar! Boy, do they have a mouth full of teeth! Thank goodness it was even slower than I was. Lesson learned - my cleaning rags are now in a sealed plastic container. With the possums, water moccasins, brown recluse spiders, wasps and mice, I think one of the major hazards in flying is in the hangar! Well, that's my article for the month. Maybe I can get the Safety Councilor, Rick Albrecht, to write an article next time.
CHRISTMAS PARTY - It isn't too early to start thinking about Christmas shopping! While you are at it, remember our Christmas party will host the second annual "Rob Your Neighbor" or "Chinese Gift Exchange". If you would like to participate this year, please find a $10.00 gift (gag gifts are also fine) and be sure to wrap it. More about this at the meeting!
DINNER RESERVATIONS - Once again I ask that you please telephone your reservations for our dinners by the Monday evening preceding the meeting. It is most important for the staff at The Columns Banquet Center to know how much food to prepare for us. If you reserve and don't show up, the treasury pays for your meal. If you don't make a reservation, then someone that did make one may not get to eat. It was said that the newsletter was delivered late to some members last month, but we always meet and eat on the second Wednesday of every month so please mark your calendars, now.
PROGRAM CHANGE - At the October meeting we discussed and voted to begin the program at 7:30. We are able to do this since we started opening the buffet almost a half hour earlier. We will see how it works for a month or two. If hangar flying gets cut too short we can change it back again.
NOVEMBER MEETING - The November 8th speaker will be Mr. Walt Hubert. Mr. Hubert has traveled to Europe several times and will show pictures of some of the light aircraft, airports and other points of interest. It will be interesting to tour Europe and their airports through the eyes of a fellow pilot. Please join us at The Columns in St. Charles and bring a few friends! The doors open at 6:30, the buffet line begins almost immediately and the program is at 7:30.
Dinner will be a Thanksgiving feast consisting of tossed salad, vegetable soup, turkey and dressing, broiled scrod w/ lemon sauce, sweet potatoes, buttered zucchini & winter squash, rolls and pumpkin pie. Dinner reservations should be phoned to Jean Murry at 314-469-3541 by Monday evening, November 6. See you there!
GATEWAY's FLYING CALENDAR
Be sure to mark your calendar!
Nov. 8 - Gateway Chapter meets at The Columns at 6:30.
The speaker will be Walt Hubert. Program at 7:30.
Nov. 12 - State Board meeting in Columbia at 1:00. All members welcome.
Nov. 19 - Gateway chapter Fly-out to Mattoon, IL (home of the Elephant Ear)
Dec. 10 - State Board meeting in Columbia at 1:00. All members welcome.
Dec. 13 - Gateway Chapter meets at The Columns at 6:30 for our Christmas Party.
Dec. 17 - Gateway chapter Fly-out / drive-out breakfast at KILROY'S on Smartt Field.
Call Fly-out chairman Brian Brinker at 314-647-1138 for information. Dates and destinations subject to change. Bad weather alternate is the Sunday noon barbecue at Creve Coeur Airport.
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