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coanda

60 hour best friend

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After the fall of Silver State heli my flight school started to absorb some students. As a flight instructor with no affiliation with Silver State, I was eager to see what they had been teaching down on the other side of the airport. I will say I wasn't surprised to hear and see some of the "maneuvers" they were teaching not to mention some of the personalities these people had.

One student however was particularly bright, having taken all of his written tests before his first checkride (out scoring me on all but one!) and flying so good we were just burning the last couple of hours until he was allowed to take his ride. He had me and everyone around him impressed with his flying, aviation knowledge, people skills, and great sense of humor. After passing his private ride we started to fly under the hood and log some cross country PIC. During these looong, looong flights we had some great conversations about not just flying but everything from the military to mixed martial arts. When we were done he'd usually offer to pay for dinner and drinks and we would go out and continue to have a good time. Once we went to his home town and I went to dinner with his parents. I told them how good he was doing and that he had a promising future in the helicopter world.

I would say he was one of my best friends and I only knew him for a little over 60 flight hours.

 

Friday August 29, 2008 while ferrying a new R44 from Torrance to Illinois, Adam Long died when his helicopter crashed into the woods surrounding Table Rock Lake in MO.

 

I would be foolish to think that i could fly professionally as a helicopter pilot and not lose a friend at some point in my career but I sure didn't expect it in my first year. They don't really talk about what to do when you lose a student in the FOI's but let me tell you its hard. He was a great person, budding helicopter professional, and a dear...60 hour... friend. Adam you will be missed.

Edited by coanda

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I am so sorry for your loss, the loss of his friends and his family, and the loss to the helicopter world.

 

RIP :(

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Adam sounds like a good person, sorry to hear of his passing and sorry for your loss. Losses are never easy to accept, accept that and you can start to move on and be thankful that you got to share time with him no matter how little it was.

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I'm really sorry to hear about Adam. He sounds like he had the makings of a first class Pilot. It's always tough to read about a pilot losing their life in a crash, but I'm sure it's infinitely harder when it's someone you call a friend.

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I think I may have met him once. I think he stopped by our base in Farmington just before he started training. The way some other described him, that had to be the same guy I met. We talked for a few hours about the industry, training, etc.

 

Sorry to hear it. It's been a rough summer for helicopter pilots.

 

Did you know the other pilot with him? He was a SLU grad--about the same time I was their, but I didn't know him. Where did he work?

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Very sorry to hear this. He sounded like a good friend.

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I would be foolish to think that i could fly professionally as a helicopter pilot and not lose a friend at some point in my career but I sure didn't expect it in my first year. They don't really talk about what to do when you lose a student in the FOI's but let me tell you its hard. He was a great person, budding helicopter professional, and a dear...60 hour... friend. Adam you will be missed.

 

 

I grew up in the helicopter industry, my dad was a Vietnam pilot and the went into logging with just about any company you can name today. I cannot remember how many phone calls at the dinner table he recieved when a co-worker had crashed. It was a lot. It's a dangerous business, many good men and women die. A sad fact but we really only get one screw up and that's it. My Dad told me when I started flying, there are those that have, and those that will.

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After the fall of Silver State heli my flight school started to absorb some students. As a flight instructor with no affiliation with Silver State, I was eager to see what they had been teaching down on the other side of the airport. I will say I wasn't surprised to hear and see some of the "maneuvers" they were teaching not to mention some of the personalities these people had.

One student however was particularly bright, having taken all of his written tests before his first checkride (out scoring me on all but one!) and flying so good we were just burning the last couple of hours until he was allowed to take his ride. He had me and everyone around him impressed with his flying, aviation knowledge, people skills, and great sense of humor. After passing his private ride we started to fly under the hood and log some cross country PIC. During these looong, looong flights we had some great conversations about not just flying but everything from the military to mixed martial arts. When we were done he'd usually offer to pay for dinner and drinks and we would go out and continue to have a good time. Once we went to his home town and I went to dinner with his parents. I told them how good he was doing and that he had a promising future in the helicopter world.

I would say he was one of my best friends and I only knew him for a little over 60 flight hours.

 

Friday August 29, 2008 while ferrying a new R44 from Torrance to Illinois, Adam Long died when his helicopter crashed into the woods surrounding Table Rock Lake in MO.

 

I would be foolish to think that i could fly professionally as a helicopter pilot and not lose a friend at some point in my career but I sure didn't expect it in my first year. They don't really talk about what to do when you lose a student in the FOI's but let me tell you its hard. He was a great person, budding helicopter professional, and a dear...60 hour... friend. Adam you will be missed.

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"A sad fact but we really only get one screw up and that's it. My Dad told me when I started flying, there are those that have, and those that will. "

 

Im having a difficult time bitting my tongue here....

 

But if I thought this way, I get way away from aviation. Ive been in aviation for 30+ years now w/o incident.....

 

Please rethink your concepts. I have lots of friends who never have, and many more who have retired WITHOUT incident. Sad sad summary you (and your father) offer...

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"A sad fact but we really only get one screw up and that's it. My Dad told me when I started flying, there are those that have, and those that will. "

 

Im having a difficult time bitting my tongue here....

 

But if I thought this way, I get way away from aviation. Ive been in aviation for 30+ years now w/o incident.....

 

Please rethink your concepts. I have lots of friends who never have, and many more who have retired WITHOUT incident. Sad sad summary you (and your father) offer...

 

 

Invulnerability ("It won't happen to me.") - Accidents happen to other people, not to me. Therefore, I can take chances.

 

 

Well congratulations! I hope to God you continue to fly safe. However, you're awfully niaeve if you think that youre not just as much at risk as the next guy. You havent been flying long enough if you have had zero incidents,whether through your own imperfection or not. To not think that way means YOU should get away from aviation.

 

To the original poster I did not mean to hijack the thread, I am sorry for your loss and as it's been said very nicely written tribute to what sounds like a great friend.

Edited by jfcorey

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Coanda- well written tribute to your friend. Like any accident, I sure would like to know what happened.

 

Goldy

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