departing the final fix outbound

Old Nov 25, 19, 9:27 pm
  #1  
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departing the final fix outbound

Careful, loooong post!!




It has been a while since I posted on this forum, but I keep an eye on it periodically. Back a few years ago, there was a thread called UNITED PILOT Q&A, and I used to post things and answer questions on it, but it slowly dwindled down to nothing, unfortunately, because I liked responding to various questions that folks had. Anyway, here nor there, but some of you may remember those days and those threads.




Fast forward to now, and on November 12th, I flew my last flight as a captain for United Airlines. I really hate the word ďretiredĒ because it makes leaving my job when federally mandated sound like I just quit before I normally would. I actually did quit 4 days early. My 65th Bday was the 17th, and we could not be scheduled to fly beyond 1 AM the day before we turn 65. That accounts for a delay of up to 23 hours.




My final trip was a four day trip, DEN-PVR-ORD the first day, ORD-PSP-ORD the second day, ORD-YYZ the third day, and YYZ-DEN the last day. Anyone who was passing through ORD or YYZ on the 11th or 12th can attest to the fact that the weather was crap both places, and yes, we got to go through de-icing, delays, slimy runways, the whole thing, and Iím glad I never have to coordinate that stuff again, at least with the airlines.




I had one of my all-time favorite First Officers with me for that last trip. She is not only a dear personal friend of mine and my wifeís, she is also one of the best pilots I have ever flown with, in fact, Iíll say sheís THE best. She was flying for the airlines at the age of 20, and flying jets for the rich and famous, as a Captain at the age of 23, and she made her way every step on her own, no consideration for the fact that sheís a woman. She is a fellow snowboarder, musician, motorcyclist, and scuba diver as well. Sheís 35 now, and Iím very proud and thankful that United hired her, along with the current crop of newer pilots, whom are all among the finest pilots of any generation.




My wife got to fly the last three flights with us, which is something that she had previously done.once. DEN-OMA on a Thanksgiving Day in 2011. My kudos go to our flight operations folks in Denver, who, per company policy, arranged for her to be on a positive-space first class seat on all three flights. Thatíll be the last time that happens, unless I get savvy with our 1,000,000 MP miles, mostly from MP Vida purchases, but also we have been buying seats lately because of not really enjoying the non-rev games of chance.




I did not have a water arch sprayed over the plane as we taxied in, because it isnít done here if the outside air temperature is 50F or below, and Denver at 8:30 AM in the middle of November is unlikely to be anywhere near that temperature.




No matter, though. My FO and flight attendants secretly conspired to make those flights very special to me, with cards, notes, PA announcements, and an old safety briefing card (Iím sure youíre all familiar with those) that she had laminated prior to the rip, and had signatures from all my crews, and a few cards that the FAs passed around the cabin on the flights. I wonder if any of you signed it????




There were probably 30 friends, fellow United peeps, and our chief pilot there to meet us when we taxied into the gate. My FO and I finished my final parking checklist, then whipped our side windows open did a fist-pump. All was captured on video.




After a little party in Ops, my wife and I, along with my FO and three others went bar-hopping on the B Concourse. I managed to be out of uniform for that.




If you made it to this final paragraph, let me thank you all for following that thread, years back. I have gotten lots of great advice from you all, being an actual MP member myself, and will continue to do so. I also enjoyed answering your questions along the way.




Thank you, one and all




freshairborne
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Old Nov 25, 19, 9:31 pm
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Originally Posted by freshairborne View Post
Careful, loooong post!!




It has been a while since I posted on this forum, but I keep an eye on it periodically. Back a few years ago, there was a thread called UNITED PILOT Q&A, and I used to post things and answer questions on it, but it slowly dwindled down to nothing, unfortunately, because I liked responding to various questions that folks had. Anyway, here nor there, but some of you may remember those days and those threads.




Fast forward to now, and on November 12th, I flew my last flight as a captain for United Airlines. I really hate the word ďretiredĒ because it makes leaving my job when federally mandated sound like I just quit before I normally would. I actually did quit 4 days early. My 65th Bday was the 17th, and we could not be scheduled to fly beyond 1 AM the day before we turn 65. That accounts for a delay of up to 23 hours.




My final trip was a four day trip, DEN-PVR-ORD the first day, ORD-PSP-ORD the second day, ORD-YYZ the third day, and YYZ-DEN the last day. Anyone who was passing through ORD or YYZ on the 11th or 12th can attest to the fact that the weather was crap both places, and yes, we got to go through de-icing, delays, slimy runways, the whole thing, and Iím glad I never have to coordinate that stuff again, at least with the airlines.




I had one of my all-time favorite First Officers with me for that last trip. She is not only a dear personal friend of mine and my wifeís, she is also one of the best pilots I have ever flown with, in fact, Iíll say sheís THE best. She was flying for the airlines at the age of 20, and flying jets for the rich and famous, as a Captain at the age of 23, and she made her way every step on her own, no consideration for the fact that sheís a woman. She is a fellow snowboarder, musician, motorcyclist, and scuba diver as well. Sheís 35 now, and Iím very proud and thankful that United hired her, along with the current crop of newer pilots, whom are all among the finest pilots of any generation.




My wife got to fly the last three flights with us, which is something that she had previously done.once. DEN-OMA on a Thanksgiving Day in 2011. My kudos go to our flight operations folks in Denver, who, per company policy, arranged for her to be on a positive-space first class seat on all three flights. Thatíll be the last time that happens, unless I get savvy with our 1,000,000 MP miles, mostly from MP Vida purchases, but also we have been buying seats lately because of not really enjoying the non-rev games of chance.




I did not have a water arch sprayed over the plane as we taxied in, because it isnít done here if the outside air temperature is 50F or below, and Denver at 8:30 AM in the middle of November is unlikely to be anywhere near that temperature.




No matter, though. My FO and flight attendants secretly conspired to make those flights very special to me, with cards, notes, PA announcements, and an old safety briefing card (Iím sure youíre all familiar with those) that she had laminated prior to the rip, and had signatures from all my crews, and a few cards that the FAs passed around the cabin on the flights. I wonder if any of you signed it????




There were probably 30 friends, fellow United peeps, and our chief pilot there to meet us when we taxied into the gate. My FO and I finished my final parking checklist, then whipped our side windows open did a fist-pump. All was captured on video.




After a little party in Ops, my wife and I, along with my FO and three others went bar-hopping on the B Concourse. I managed to be out of uniform for that.




If you made it to this final paragraph, let me thank you all for following that thread, years back. I have gotten lots of great advice from you all, being an actual MP member myself, and will continue to do so. I also enjoyed answering your questions along the way.




Thank you, one and all




freshairborne
Well done brother! Happy Retirement FAB!
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Old Nov 25, 19, 9:53 pm
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Thank you for all the insights you have provided over the year, Much appreciate.

Enjoy "retirement", just a transition to the next chapter of your life
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Old Nov 25, 19, 9:55 pm
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Great post!

I too remember the older pilot Q&A threads and always enjoyed them. THANK YOU for the long post and congratulations!
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Old Nov 25, 19, 10:40 pm
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Congratulations
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Old Nov 25, 19, 10:54 pm
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Congratulations, and thanks for the seniority number! LOL
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Old Nov 25, 19, 11:03 pm
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By far my favorite threads! Congratulations and donít be a stranger around here!
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Old Nov 25, 19, 11:09 pm
  #8  
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Although not your choice, congratulations. I've enjoyed your pilot insight over the years and look forward to hearing how you make use of the 1,000,000 miles. Enjoy this next chapter.
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Old Nov 26, 19, 1:59 am
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FAB, thank you for all the great posts over the years. along with EWR764 and jose, you, clubord and LarryJ are my favorite posters on this site. your insight into the company and ops is thoroughly appreciated.

the pilot Q&A thread does still exist, but it has fizzled out, and most questions nowadays are asked by noobs and are pretty dumb:
United Pilot Q & A thread

best of luck in the future, and i hope you can manage to check in with your friends on FT from time to time!
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Old Nov 26, 19, 6:27 am
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As my user name suggests I too was "in the game", and retired the day I turned 50 (mandatory 56 for ATC per the Feds) after 30 years, mostly at ATL and ATL TRACON.

Haven't missed it but a handful of times and now the fruits of my labor are paying off with non-stop travel, mostly in Europe and the ME.

Go and enjoy the fruits of your labor, fly the flight plan of your choosing and enjoy the world. Do it all in J and F, but above all, congratulations Captain.
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Last edited by RetiredATLATC; Nov 26, 19 at 6:52 am
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Old Nov 26, 19, 9:39 am
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I'd just like to say that I am always impressed by the professionalism of UA flight crew. Every day you face different challenges (e.g., weather, route, load, traffic, etc), and I continue to be amazed how well it all works. I know a little bit about complex systems, and the system you are a key cog in is one of the most complex imaginable. Bravo on having a great career, and serving us Pax so well. And I always appreciated your comments and insights on FT. I do hope that you continue. Best wishes.
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Old Nov 26, 19, 9:46 am
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Happy trails, FAB!

Thanks for all the posts in Pilots Q&A!
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Old Nov 26, 19, 10:13 am
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It was a pleasure and an honor and I don't know if you're ex-Navy or not but...

Fair winds and following skies
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Old Nov 26, 19, 10:32 am
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Congratulations
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Old Nov 26, 19, 10:49 am
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Congratulations, and I hope I had the privilege of being on one (or more) of your flights!
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