Famed Flight To Be Retraced, With Austin Hatcher Foundation Along For The Ride

Friday, June 6, 2014

It’s time to test the vintage 1949 Piper PA-11, which will be in the air again, with a man named Chris Nesin at the controls and his wife April as his navigator. After this weekend’s inaugural test flight near Chatsworth, Ga., the goal will be mirroring a fabled 1966 cross-country journey made in the Piper by two teenagers named Rinker and Kern Buck.

That journey – from New Jersey to California – yielded a memoir by Rinker Buck, 31 years later, which is beloved by small-plane enthusiasts, entitled Flight of Passage. And so this new flight, scheduled for June 22-July 2 from Lock Haven, Pa. to Riverside, Calif., comes with a revised name: “Retracing the Flight of Passage.

It also comes with a goal: helping raise awareness for the Chattanooga-based Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer.

 “We thought it would just be amazing to partner with the Foundation on this trip,” said Ms. Nesin, a pediatric psychologist with the foundation. 

The Piper, professional pilot Mr. Nesin said, “just kind of fell into my lap. I had purchased a similar airplane which I flew for many years and around 2011 I started looking for another one with a little more power. One day I just happened to see this Piper in some classified ads.”

Mr. Nesin called the owner with an offer. Over the years he said he had come to cherish the Flight of Passage tale.

The Buck Brothers’ journey was deeply personal and the Nesins’ will be no less so, due to their love of flying and their commitment to spreading the word about the good works of the Foundation, said officials.

Mr. Nesin said he is awaiting FAA paperwork that will provide clearance for a test flight on Sunday. “After that,” he added, “I’ll have a week-and-a-half, with my mechanic right there, to work the bugs out before the trip.”

Live updates and overall progress of the Nesins’ flight will be available at www.SuperCub.org. The enthusiast site is sponsoring the venture.

Surviving An Active Shooter Training Seminar Set For May 16

The Run, Hide, Fight: Surviving an Active Shooter seminar will be held Monday, May 16, from 7-9 p.m. at Brainerd Presbyterian Church, EPC, at 1624 Jenkins Road.  The program will be presented by Jerry C. Stout, special agent, Bureau of Preparedness Office of Homeland Security.  Terrorism can even come to Chattanooga as was experienced last July.  This is just one ... (click for more)

Over 500 Participated In Cleveland Recycles 5K Run And 1 Mile Fun Walk

The city of Cleveland hosted is second annual Cleveland Recycles 5K Run and 1 Mile Fun Walk on Saturday. The race drew 552 registrations with 420 people participating this year. The event was held at Cleveland newest park, Greenway Park, which is situated along the Cleveland/Bradley Greenway. The main focus of this event is raising awareness about the benefits of recycling and ... (click for more)

Fire Displaces Mother And Son At House Near Dodds Avenue

No one was home when fire broke out in a Chattanooga home near Dodds Avenue late Friday morning. The Chattanooga Fire Department received the alarm around 11 a.m. and responded to 2609 Reece St. with four fire companies.  Battalion Chief Carlos Hampton said the firefighters made a quick, interior attack and got the fire under control in roughly 10 minutes. ... (click for more)

Planning Commission To Review New Form-Based Code Monday At 1 PM; Start Zoning Cases At 3 PM

The Planning Commission on Monday afternoon will be reviewing the proposed Form Based Code in addition to a large number of zoning cases.   Officials said the new code and the zoning cases "have generated significant public interest so we are expecting a large crowd."  The review of the Form-Based Code by the Planning Commission is scheduled to take ... (click for more)

The History Of Avondale Recreation Center

I grew up in Avondale from third grade until I was married and two children. East Chattanooga had a center since before I was born. The only time I was gone was when I, along with six buddies, joined the USMC.   The families in Avondale, a working class neighborhood, wanted a community center closer to home so the Avondale Civic League took on the task. They raised the money ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Bad Ideas Never Work

When the Chattanooga City Council gave Kevin Muhammad, who is purportedly the “leader” of the Nation of Islam’s “Chattanooga chapter” or whatever it is, “the right” to speak for 20 anguished minutes on Monday night, everybody who heard about it could have told our city leaders it was “stinkin’ thinkin’.” My goodness, did you think he was going to read a sweet passage from the ... (click for more)