When people ask me where I grew up I usually
respond, "I don't know". Either I don't feel that I
grew up or can't really pick the place where it might have happened.
My junior and senior high school years were spent in a small dairy
farming community in upstate New York called Cobleskill.
College years were misspent in Cobleskill and Albany, New York.
In 1975 I moved from New York City to Port Orchard, Washington
and then to Bainbridge Island, Washington.
In 1982 I wrote some resumes (mostly fiction)
and convinced a fishing lodge in Alaska that I would make a good
fishing guide and worked the next eight summers guiding in Alaska
and goofing off in either Florida, Mexico or Washington during
the winters. One of the lodges had airplanes and I saw that the
pilots lazed around while directing us guides to do their work,
I thought, "now, that's the life for me".
In 1986 - 1988 I obtained my pilot's licenses
to start what I thought would be an easy and carefree existence.
Unfortunately I have never found any guides or anyone else who
was as easily hornswaggled as I was and so have never realized
the life of leisure I aspire to. I worked another two years as
a pilot/guide and then nine years for Taquan Air in Ketchikan,
Alaska, first as a line pilot, then as Chief Pilot, then as Director
In 1996 I called up Alice, who I had gone out
with 13 years earlier when we were both working for Waterfall
Resort on Prince of Wales Island, Alaska. I ask her if she would
like to go out to dinner (she was in Colorado, I in Alaska) she
said yes and we married a year later. Some women will do just
about anything to come to Alaska.
In 2001 I asked Alice if we could go into business
for ourselves in a one plane/one pilot airtaxi (we had just bought
a house so we had lots of free cash). For some reason she said
yes and that's how we got here. We have been doing this for a
couple of years now, and find that it was a great decision, even
though I still haven't found anyone to do all the work yet.
We'd love to show you this part of Alaska, we
specialize in customized trips for you. Please call us for information,
whether it's to go see bears, the Misty Fjords/Glaciers, go fishing,
go camping or maybe you have an unique idea of your own. I'll
share my experience with you and help make your Alaska vacation
the one you've dreamed of.
Alice died on July 4, 2006
from breast cancer that had spread throughout her body. She was
53. We all miss her very much and I still think of Family Air
as her creation as much as mine.
While Alice was alive she
reminded every woman over 40 or at a high risk for the disease
to get annual breast exams and mammograms. She encouraged others
in their fight against cancer and reminded them that the survival
rate is high for those with early detection.
She also was very saddened
by those young (and older) people who smoke, as it raises the
risk for all types of cancer and other diseases.
If you live in Ketchikan,
Southeast Alaska, or just have generous heart, you might think
of donating to
First City council on Cancer
they were a great help in our fight and they are a great local
The following websites can
give you more information.