26 July 2011


My sincerest apologies for the tardiness in keeping things fllowing on this blog. Having a newborn in the house just changes the dynamics of life. Not much time to be spent on the blog and other things.

I hope to have a couple of post added to blog in the coming week or so.

Again thanks for visiting my blog.

01 June 2011

A bad day...err week...ahhh make that...

As with all operations a fluid as AIROPS are, we sometimes get caught in a downward spiral of endless delays, mechanical's and all the things that make civil aviation the thing it is today. We, meaning the airline I work for, just went through one of those "rough patches" recently. Now I love what I do and who I work for, but for the the past couple weeks, we in dispatch always seemed to be running an operation in crisis mode.

During one shift, I encountered several mechanical delays running into several hours of accumulated delays for all of our flights, a medical emergency at an out station and almost simultaneously an in flight emergency while the medical was going on, necessitating a return to field of our aircraft adding to the delays. I hate having to have our passengers delayed. Basically, SHIT HAPPENS!

Now, I hope at least for a while, that all this has passed and we can look forward to smoother skies for our airline. But for a while, man, it was a mental marathon with everything going on at once. Just glad to see everyone pull thru and take care of our passengers and get them to where they need to go safely, albeit a little bit delayed.

14 March 2011

Wake Island

One of the pilots with whom I work with also happens to be a flight planner in the U.S. Air Force here in HNL. Recently he was tasked with handling a group of aircraft movements. Major Madson, call sign "Maddog" headed to Wake Island to dispatch the aircraft that were on layover and get them to their final destination.
While on Wake, he happened to take some photo's and sent them to me.
(All photo's, except where noted, courtesy of Maj. Madson)

Here's some background info on Wake. Wake Island (also known as Wake Atoll, pronounced /weik/) is a coral atoll having a coastline of 12 miles (19 km) in the North Pacific Ocean, located about two-thirds of the way from Honolulu 2,300 statute miles (3,700 km) west to Guam 1,510 statute miles (2,430 km) east. It is an unorganized, unincorporated territory of the United States, administered by the Office of Insular Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior. Access to the island is restricted, and all current activities on the island are managed by the United States Air Force.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Shane A. Cuomo

The Battle of Wake Island began simultaneously with the Attack on Pearl Harbor and ended on 23 December 1941, with the surrender of the American forces to the Empire of Japan. It was fought on and around the atoll formed by Wake Island and its islets of Peale and Wilkes Islands by the air, land and naval forces of the Empire of Japan against those of the U.S., with Marines playing a prominent role on both sides.

The island was held by the Japanese until September 4, 1945, when the remaining Japanese garrison surrendered to a detachment of United States Marines.

Welcome to Wake Island!

Admiralty Command Post on the beach. The sign in the picture reads:

Historical Site
 Japanese Admiralty
Command Post Built
By American Civilian POWS - Completed

Another site built by American Civilian POWs, This sign reads:

Historical Site
Japanese Aircraft
Revetments Built By
American Civilian
POWS - Completed

Maj. Madson standing next to "98 Rock".
The "98 Rock" is a memorial for the 98 U.S. civilian contract POWs who were forced by their Japanese captors to rebuild the airstrip as slave labor, then were blind-folded and killed by machine gun Oct. 5, 1943.

 An unidentified prisoner escaped, and chiseled "98 US PW 5-10-43" on a large coral rock near their mass grave, on Wilkes Island at the edge of the lagoon. The prisoner was recaptured and beheaded by the Japanese admiral, who was later convicted and executed for war crimes.

The shell, of what once was the bunker for Major James Devereux, commander of the First Marine Defense Battalion on Wake Island.

Major Devereux fought for the defense of Wake for 15 days before being captured with his men and taken as a POW

The Marine Corps Memorial on Wake Island in remembrance of those who served there during the battle

The Base Operations Building on the airfield

The flight line with it's complement of A-10 and F-18 "Super Hornets" in the early morning awaiting their crews

During this mission, Maj. Madson caught a ride on an KC-10 mid air refuel over and back from Wake to dispatch the A-10 and Hornets. During which time he was able to take some shots of the mid-air refuel of a couple of the aircraft's

A refueling A-10 Thunderbolt, better known as the "Warthog"

And here, a Navy F-18 gets "topped off" by the Hawaii Air National Guard somewhere over the Pacific

Thanks again to Maddog for allowing me share these photo's of a very historic and important part of American History.

Lest We Forget...

13 March 2011

God Be With You...

A tragic time in Japan with the devastating earthquake and then the Tsunami.
My heart and prayers go out to all those affected by this tragedy.

Please consider making a donation to the Red Cross or your local disaster relief agency to help out the citizens of Japan especially those in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture, during this time.

 Japan Red Cross: http://www.jrc.or.jp/

Charity Navigator - Is a centralized site offering legitimate agencies that are offering help.

09 March 2011

Hide and Seek

Here's one for the dispatch files. It's a first for me.
So look at the first picture. What do you speculate as to what's going on?

Okay, so we have panels open. Maintenance personnel standing around.

A problem with the nose gear? Or an avionics issue?

Nope! None of the above. This litte guy, a 5 inch long centipede was discovered by the flight crew cralling around. It appeared while the aircraft was on the ground and scurried away before it could be caught. Maintenance was called and they started opening panels looking for it. The aircraft was fumagated and I guess that was too much for it. It came out and was quickly "dispatched"! (no pun intended!)

Well be working with the security department to see how the centipede got onboard and by-passed security!

Dispatching "Con Air"!

( For security and privacy concers, all photos displayed have been altered to protect the identites of those shown and sensitive infomation has been edited out of all photos and no specific details or information are provided ).

Island Air, has been providing flights to the State of Hawaii, Dept. of Corrections for prisoner transport more commonly known as "ConAir" since late last year. It's nothing like you think or saw in the movie. Prisoner transfer happen everyday all across the country. All are uneventful.
These flights are done and provide a controlled, safe, efficent and economical way of transporting a large number of prisoners between the neighbor islands instead of placing them on scheduled flights.

These flights normally are controlled by the Department of Corrections who advises us on which days they will need a transport and we then provide a crew and aircraft for them.

The ConAir flights are considered by Island Air Supplemental Operations conducted under Domestic Flight Rules.

Under FAR 121.537 Responsibility for Operational Control during supplemental operations, both the Captain of the flight and the Director of Flight Operations are jointly responsible for all aspects of the flight. The Dispatchers act for the Dir. of FLTOPS

As the dispatcher on duty, we monitor the flight and keep track of it. We provide a crew wth a dispatch release and current weather on the day of flight. All other aspects are routine. Crews receive a full briefing from the dispatcher. The aircraft is pre-flighted and then the crew awaits the passengers and guards for the flight.

While all transfer are done, state sherriff deputies closely oversee the operation.

From a dispatching point of view, "ConAir" flights are handled like any other flight.
It's just another day at the office.

06 March 2011

Military Aviation in Hawaii

Hawaii has always been a focal point of the U.S. Military. A strategic point in the Pacific. We are a critical link in the defense of the U.S. As some may or may not know, HNL is a joint civilian/military airfield. On any given day you can see a variety of military aircraft coming or going from here.

Here's a look of some of the aircraft that I have seen from my office window.

The U.S. Marine Corps VIP C-20, also known as the "Grey Ghost

 A USAF C-40B Executive transport aircraft

A USAF C-130 Hercules aircraft arriving and taxing to Joint Base Pearl Harbor/Hickam, Hawaii

 A Hawaii Air National Guard F-22 departing via RWY 22L in HNL

 A Navy F-18 Super Hornet after departing 08L in HNL

 Followed by a USAF KC-10 airborne refueler

 Another refueler, the old but venerable KC-135 departing RWY 22L on a rainy day

 A US Navy P-3 Orion  turboprop anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft. As Ryan, a visitor to my blog pointed out, that Navy P-3 was recently painted in that old seaplane paint scheme in honor of the Centennial of Naval Aviation.
Thanks Ryan!

A USAF C17 based out of Elmendorf AFB in Alaska takes the high speed
after landing on 04R in HNL

And a pair of UH-60 of the U.S. Army practicing the ILS on RWY 08 at HNL

And probably the most recognized aircraft in the world...

Air Force One lands at Hickam Air Force (AFB) with US President George W. Bush on board for his first visit to Hawaii while holding office. On the ground, the second Boeing VC-25A.

(I've seen Air Force One twice, but never had a camera with me, so I got this photo from Wikipedia. Photo credit: CPL Roman Gray, USMC)

Hawaii is proud of it's service to our country and also of it's military personnel. These island will remain an integral part of the U.S. Military and the U.S.A. to ensure that all people and countries of the Pacific region remain a safe place

Hollywood comes to HNL

I consider myself lucky to have my office right at the airport. I also consider it even luckier that my office overlooks Honolulu International Airport. Even though I'm busy alot, I do have the opportunity to take in the view of the airfield.

So today I was fortunate to have the opportunity of being able to see them film one of my favorite shows on TV, Hawaii Five-0 at the hanger next door.

Cameras roll as two actors portraying U.S. Marshall deputies are seen walking off the Grumman G-II.
In the shot is Officer Dan "Dano " Williams played by Scott Cann standing in front of his silver Chevy that he drives around with and LT Commander Steven "Steve" McGarrett played by actor Alex O'Loughlin. Both actors watch the action from the sidelines.

Cameras roll as the actors portraying U.S. Marshall's escort a prisoner from the aircraft. Actors Scott Cann and Alex O'Loughlin can be seeing standing in the foreground next to the silver car

This shot shows the actors waiting around and taking a break as they wait for the crew to set up. Once they completed with the shoot on the ramp, the cast and crew moved into the hanger for more shooting.

The Hawaii Five-O crew started at 0400L setting things up and cameras were rolling at around 0600L. They completed all filming on location by 1230L. I look forward to watching this unfold when the show airs sometime in the near future.

For more information on the show, go to:

28 January 2011

25 Years Ago...

...on that cold January morning atop the Space Shuttle Challenger, rode seven astronauts. Each member as diverse as the United Sates is. All loved.
51-L Challenger Crew in White Room
Please take a moment to reflect on these astronauts and all those that have gone before to help pave the way for our future in space.

"Their truest testimony will not be in the words we speak, but in the way they led their lives and in the way they lost those lives - with dedication, honor and an unquenchable desire to explore this mysterious and beautiful universe". - President Ronald Regan, Challenger Memorial Service, 1986.


Richard "Dick" Scobee, Michael Smith, Ellison Onizuka, Judith Resnik, Ron McNair, Gregory Jarvis and Christa McAuliffe.