Thursday, September 1, 2005
For a pilot who has owned them all, only one stole his heart
Along the way, he went to work for Lockheed no less than three separate times. The second time, he got laid off, so he went back home to Tennessee and got a gig assembling .50-caliber M-2 machine guns for a military contract. He found that he had an affinity for unusual weapons, and sensing a business opportunity, he went to work for himself, building and specializing in automatic guns.
One day, deep inside the guts of a big machine gun, Williams became frustrated with the day-to-day drudgery of running a business. So a friend said, “The best thing you can do right now is to go fly!”
Williams decided to take his friend’s suggestion to heart that very day. Within two weeks, he bought a Cessna 172 in which to get his license, and before he finished training, his hobby had grown into a business wherein he bought and sold more than 30 airplanes.
He didn’t stop with a private license; he obtained an instrument ticket and a commercial single-engine land. Buying and selling airplanes like the Twin Comanche required him to get a multi-engine rating as well.
Williams’ airplane business often required him to be in several different places at once, so he decided that he needed something fast. Without a second thought, the Mooney dominated his thinking. Some people are Beechcraft folks, some are Piper aficionados, and some even like the reliable Cessna. But as far as Williams is concerned, if you like speed, there’s only one airplane to consider—that is the Mooney. Williams says, “It’s the best airplane that was ever built.”
When he was flying his Mooney 252 TSE as part of his business, his usual leg length was 600 miles or less, and for a long cross-country like that, he always flew IFR. Today, most of his flying is for fun, and he likes to do that VFR.
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Labels: Piston Singles/Turbos