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"Money Lost - Nothing Lost; Health Lost - Little Lost; Spirit Lost - Everything Lost." Igor Sikorsky

Souvenir of a Narrow Escape

In 1925 I had to fly the S-29 from Long Island to a military field in Staten Island. It was late when we started and became entirely dark. There were 12 men aboard, one was a World War I pilot with a terrible temper. When we got to the military field, this man and the commanding officer of the field found themselves in an argument. They both were shrieking, until the commanding officer shouted: "You get the hell out of here with your airplane." Well, it was getting dark, but I loaded the 12 men aboard and started home. There were no lights in the cabin, no landing lights, no lights at the airport; there was just the enormous sea of lights from New York city.
It happen that I passed the field where I was going to land. It would have been worse to turn back, so I decided to come down where we were. I heard a powerful noise as we were descending and after we got out we found that a wing had broken the tops from several trees. A limb from one of the trees was draped over the wing.
The next morning, with the wind wrong and the S-29 on a slope, we took everything out of the ship, drained most of the gasoline out and put blocks under the wheels until we worked up power for a takeoff. I took Jimmy Maxwell, a mechanic, with me. The others held the wings. I took off and was happy to see the ship rise in the air with the trees below.
In Mr. Sikorsky's office is mounted, black with age, a broken limb of a cherry tree. "I keep this", Mr. Sikorsky said, "as a souvenir of a narrow escape."

80 years ago Sikorsky came to America

70 years ago Sikorsky came to Connecticut

60 years ago Sikorsky flew the VS-300

1999 Anniversaries - S-55 50th, S-58 45th, S-59 45th, S-60 40th, S-61 40th, CH-53A 35th, CH-53E 25th, BlackHawk 25th, SeaHawk 20th

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