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Stormville Airport : Stories

Carole Wyland

Carole Keeler Wyland wrote to us with four photos of her husband sky diving at Stormville. One photo includes an aerial view of neighboring Green Haven prison. Another of her husband landing under parachute.

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Martin Maisel

Martin Maisel from Lincoln, California was inspired by Stormville in his youth, into a distinguished career in aeronautical engineering. He shares a number of photographs that he made of airplanes on the field in 1958.

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Steve Kozloski

Steve Kozloski, as a young person, was interested in Sky Diving. He had a memorable visit to Stormville in the late 70's with Willy Sweet at the sky diving school, shares a poster that Willy gave to him, and writes to tell us about his experience.

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Mike Sweeney

Mike Sweeney wrote in to say, "When comparing some of my general aviation experiences flying the Bahamas, Canada, Greenland, Iceland over the North Atlantic to Europe, out west to places like Sedona, the earlier flying days as a student into N69 still remain near the top of the list." Mike flies a light twin, using a Seneca for volunteer flying for Patient Airlift Services Angel flight missions. He shared a story with us, which he titles, "N69, haven for student pilot"

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Stormville's founders passed

Pete O'Brien has left this world and passed into the world of fond memories. According to this obituary from the Poughkeepsie Journal, Pete died on February 16, 2012. Born October 8, 1909, Pete lived for 102 years. During his life, and with his wife Rose, he built and operated the Stormville Airport. The Journal obit' says that he and Rose were married 43 years when she died in 1988.

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Tom Boyle

Sue Pignatello writes, "My father Tom Boyle flew his plane in Stormville when I was a child. I see a post from Harold Keeler's daughter and I know my dad and Harry were friends, I remember meeting him with my dad. My father passed away in 1969 from Hodgkin's Disease. If anyone knew my dad or has any photos of him there with his plane I would love to see them."

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Jim Spinner

Jim Spinner wrote about his father, "As a boy growing up my Dad and Mom would take all of us kids (8) over to Stormville from Pawling, almost every weekend, to enjoy the "family" of the Airport. My Dad was once the youngest pilot in New York at 16 years of age. He loved to fly and to take us kids for rides. He would rent a Piper Cub or Cessna and up we would go flying, of course, not all at once."

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Charles Davis

Chuck Davis, a retired pilot in Virginia writes, "Back in the 60's used to be a hangar queen Bellanca 14-13-2 in the hangar with a bunch of j-3's stacked nose down tail up in front of it. All of the cubs had kids name on front cowl (like Rosie etc). My dad bought the Bellanca. We hauled it to Wurtsboro NY airport and rebuilt it with non-stop work in about 6 months. I got my commercial ticket in it."

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Lockheed Lodestar

Jason Barnett wrote to say, "I recently purchased the remains of a Lockheed C-60 Lodestar that had once been based out of Stormville Airport. (N43WT) I was able to pull up photos of it from the 1970's while based there. I saw on your site a story from David Mason talking about flying this plane."

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Harold Keeler

My Dad, Harold C. Keeler, initially learned to fly at Stormville in the early 60's. He earned many ratings, including helicopter and flight instructor. After his retirement from the NYPD in 1981, he retired to Florida and taught part-time at the Venice FL airport. I remember our family camping on weekends at the pond on the other side of the runway in the summertime so that Dad could fly.

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Marty Tommer

Marty worked as an instructor at the Stormville Sport Parachute Center for about five years in the late seventies. The sky diving school was operated by twins Willy and Sandy Sweet. Marty relates that Willy once said to him, "Marty, we are living in the most exciting times. You will never see a place like Stormville again." If Willy was referring to the kind of place that would serve as base for sky diving stunts like parachuting for landing on top of a World Trade Center building, then he was certainly, sadly correct.

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Paul Roggemann

Paul started taking flying lessons at N69 in January of 1990 while working down the road at IBM East Fishkill. He was among the last students to solo at Stormville, finishing his flight training at Dutchess County Airport the same year.

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Bets Gardiner

Elizabeth "Bets" Gardiner learned flying with the Women Flyers of America (WFA) at Stormville in 1943 and 1944. She became a gunnery instructor for United States Navy pilots. Her daughter Tricia wrote to tell her story.

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David Mason

Captain David Mason writes, "Today I'm an MD-11 Captain for World Airways where I routinely fly US troops into Iraq and Afghanistan in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. I've logged over 18,000 flying hours and it all started at Stormville Airport."

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Chuck Dennis

Charles F. Dennis from Chelsea, N.Y. writes, "I learned to fly at Stormville Airport (N69)in 1957. Wilfred MacAdams was my first instructor, and gave me my private license. I also instructed at Stormville then went on to TWA and flew as a Captain for 28 of my 33+ years. I flew B727, B707, B747, L1011 As a Captain. Also flew CV880 as a first officer. I Can't say when I took this photo of Pete O'Brien."

Glenn Kane

Glenn Kane wrote-in from Garrison, "It is with great dismay that N69 has been allowed to fade away. I started flying at N69 in 1968. What wonderful times going up to Stormville airport, not just to fly, but to bring the family up and watch the sky divers, eat hot dogs and hamburgers, and watch the different people and their planes."

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Some History

Gilbert Halpin has provided some history and anecdotes about Stomville airport, and shared these images of the heritage of airplanes and people at Stormville in the 60's through the 90's.

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Ian Scott-Ramsay

Ian Scott-Ramsay learned to fly at Stormville and now flies a Boeing 767 for My Travel Airways. He writes to us from Glasgow, Scotland, and sent an aerial photograph taken on a trip from Glasgow to Orlando.

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May 2007, Stormville, NY

Here is a photo survey of the airport as it exists on the twelfth day of May in 2007. This was a twice yearly yard sale day, not the full scale flea market.

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If you have stories, photographs, or references to Stormville's better days as an airport, please send them to Douglas Lovell