Wednesday, December 27, 2006

A Flight to Remember

It was October of 1981 onboard a Boeing 707 Sam 27000 cruising at high altitude across the Atlantic. They were on the way to the funeral of a friend. His was a death that would change the course of the world.

In a rare trip Former Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, with President at the time Reagan, and Vice President Bush flew to the funeral of Anwar Al Sadat. All of them had dealt with the middle eastern leader, even admired him in one way or another.

Crew from the flight reported that the current President and Vice President were locked away in meetings most of the trip. Former President Nixon had rested nearly the entire flight. Carter and Ford, who had become friends in the last year and would grow closer in the following decade, sat to discuss three things
  1. The Bible - they had even requested to borrow the copy kept on Air Force One to settle a debate (which Ford won)
  2. Presidential Libraries - how to raise money and where to place them, and finally
  3. Presidential Funerals - how to be remembered.
I am one who will remember President Ford for that flight, his ability to bridge gaps, bring people together, and like a true Michigander, do the right thing & the best job you can.

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