A couple searches for their
long-lost aircraft in the Bahamas.
Apr. 2, 2004 - The tale of terror, treachery, and the search for a long-lost love that author and photographer MayCay Beeler tells in the April edition of AOPA Pilot may seem too fantastic to be true. But more than a dozen photographs added to the AOPA Online version of the column prove it really happened.
Beeler chronicles the story of Dick and Gene Fayssoux as they try to recover the remains of their Piper Cherokee Six on the small Bahamian island of Norman's Cay. More than 21 years ago in a bizarre incident, the Fayssouxes nearly lost their lives and those of their two passengers when Dick was forced to land the Six, affectionately known as Whiskey, on a blocked runway. A Piper Seneca pilot, under the orders of Carlos Lehder, the island's notorious drug lord of the infamous Medellin cartel, blocked the runway to keep visitors and tourists off the island, a hotbed of international drug smuggling and violence. But Whiskey's engine had quit and N3244W crashed, severely injuring her passengers.
Hospitalized in Nassau, the Fayssouxes were instructed by authorities to forget the incident ever took place. Whiskey was lost.
Now an idyllic vacation spot, Norman's Cay beckoned the Fayssouxes to return along with Beeler and Sidney Kirkpatrick, author of Turning the Tide: One Man Against the Medellin Cartel, to look for the remains of Whiskey.