Sound of Navy planes not so bad, he says

Published 9:09 am Saturday, December 18, 2010

To the Editor:

I was out of town for the first “bounce” demonstration put on by the Navy at the airport.

From what I have read in your paper, everyone seems to be up in arms about the noise and danger from crashes.

On Dec. 14, I was a witness in my back yard to the “bouncing” done by the Navy. I saw no pilots “hot dogging.” I did hear an airplane frequently. I have heard much louder airplanes that are owned privately that constantly drone every weekend and into evening hours during the week.

These flights by the Navy will only occur a few times a month for short durations. I have heard sirens, loud lawn mowers, loud mufflers or lack of a muffler, and loud radios. All of these are louder than those planes.

As far as danger from a crash, those pilots are extremely safe. After all, it is their butts that are on the line. The flight crews that keep them flying are as professional as any you’ll find.

If a plane crashes here, it will be a civilian plane with a civilian pilot who doesn’t have near the experience or hours that those Navy pilots do. I probably will face more chances of an accident taking this article to your paper than I will from a military aircraft flying over my head.

Who among you has had or have a loved one or friend who has been in Iraq or Afghanistan? Do you know that your friends and family are protected by these pilots and flight crews?

Because of the intelligence data they gain from radar and other instruments on board, they are able to direct military missions anywhere in the world. I think we all owe a great deal of thanks to these pilots and the aircrew for what they do for us.

A safe place for them to practice carrier landings isn’t a big price to pay. So you’ll know, I live in front of the hospital and last night I had the planes in front of me, behind me, and over my head. I’m living in the flight path.

By the way, what you hear every time a military aircraft flies over is the sound of freedom. Do you put a price tag on freedom? I think not.

Owen Gillette