December 3, 2012
By Jill W. Tallman
More than 100 Globe/Temco Swifts—including one piloted by a veteran of the Royal Canadian Air Force—filled the skies of the United States, Brazil, Canada, and France during an international fly-out on Nov. 4. The event was called “World Domination: The Day of the Swift.”
Fort Myers, Fla., Swift owner Perry Sisson thought it would be fun to see how many pilots of the low-wing, retractable-gear airplanes would be interested in flying on a single day. He said he got the idea one morning while looking at a photo of a Swift on Facebook, and “wondered whether I was flying my Swift at that same moment in time.”
Sisson used Facebook as well as phone calls and emails to invite the entire Swift community to fly on Nov. 4, and to send him data and photos on where and how long they had flown. The final tally: 101 Swifts took flight, and 32 Swifts were in the air at the same time around the world. The airplanes flew an estimated 136.2 hours.
Sisson said Joseph Armand Gerard Fernand “Fern” Villeneuve also flew on that day. Villeneuve, born July 2, 1927, is a retired lieutenant colonel in the Royal Canadian Air Force, and, according to Sisson, is widely considered in Canada to be one of the nation’s finest RCAF pilots.
AOPA Technical Editor Jill W. Tallman is an instrument-rated private pilot who owns a Piper Cherokee 140.
Around the World Flight,
An accident claimed a 17-year-old pilot seeking the world record as the youngest pilot in command to fly a single-engine airplane around the world.
A small corps of pilots patrols protected land in Kenya, facing an increasing threat from poachers as inclined to shoot aircraft as elephants.
A field of 52 wingsuit pilots took turns racing through an aerial course, four at a time, in a first-of-its-kind event organized by Red Bull.
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