Friday, Saturday, and Sunday offered great glimpses of the moon as jet traffic flew by. First, Friday, a Swiss International Airbus A-330 cooperated, then Saturday, a departing British Airways Boeing 747 obliged, and then Sunday saw Boeing 737’s from South West and Sun Country. The weekend fun ended shortly before midnight last night, as a privately owned Moroccan jet charter by the name of Dalia Air, flew through at 35,000′.
I, like many, was watching one of the morning national news shows when the unthinkable events that would change our nation forever commenced. First, one plane, and then another crashed into the World Trade Center towers. I went in to work my Boston Herald news photography shift shortly thereafter. The updated and ever-changing news reports showed one, if not both of the ill-fated airliners, departed from Boston’s Logan airport. I started toward the airport. It would take me over an hour to get from the Herald’s South End headquarters to Logan as most workers vacated the city at the same time. Cell phone service, due to heavy usage, was barely working in our area. I arrived on top of Logan’s Terminal B parking garage to look down at a quiet airport as other media members arrived. We all noticed when an F15 fighter jet roared overhead. It was at about that time that I received word that Peter West, the father of Herald colleague Matthew West, had been working in one of the WTC towers when the planes hit. Cell service was still very spotty and every once in a while, through the day, I would check in with Matthew and another co-worker/friend Matt Stone to find out any information about Mr. West. We all thought that the heavy confusion of the day and the bad cell service, etc. were the reasons we had not received information on the whereabouts of Mr. West. We are a close bunch at the Herald photography department and as the hours passed, we would contact each other to find any information we could about the West family, so as to not bother them. Peter west, a loving father, husband, brother, uncle and friend, died as he was going about his work on the 104th floor. A loving eulogy by his son Matthew would follow at the New Jersey funeral. Here is a link to the eulogy and to the Peter West memorial website. My photos below show F15 flying over Logan and a state police car guarding an American Airlines plane in the hours after the attacks. They also show one of the first jets to arrive at Logan after the four day closure of the airport. That arriving jet, a DHL cargo jet, is framed by an American flag flying above Winthrop. A few days later there was a very emotional prayer service at City Hall plaza that was attended by many area pilots and flight attendants. God bless to Mr. West and to all the victims of that horrific day. Peace on earth!
I was the first media photographer on the scene of a collision involving two airliners on the taxiway at Logan Airport on July 14, 2011.. I was in South Boston when my car’s police scanner broadcasted the voice of a pilot of a large Delta airliner. His calm voice reported that he believed that his plane had just struck another jet. I sped through the Ted Williams tunnel and up to the roof of the Terminal B parking garage. There it was, in full view, 2 planes, one with a gash through it’s tail. My photos were picked up worldwide after the Boston Herald’s usage. Here are some of the photos. The first photo was just about 8 minutes after the collision and it shows the larger “offending” jet, at left, although in this photo one cannot see the damage to the larger plane’s left wing tip. In the second photo, the larger jet is being moved, so it’s damaged left winglet is now visible with the mangled tail of the smaller jet. An interesting aside to this is that the larger plane’s winglet is still embedded in the tail section of the smaller plane.
I snapped this from our Somerville front porch during a late dinner. I don’t think I have ever seen such a unique sunset. It was beautiful as this JetBlue plane climbed over Somerville after departing Logan.
I snapped this from Winthrop today. A tricky exposure for sure. I ended up deciding on underexposing as plane after plane “shadowed” like this. The shadow would appear for just a split second. This was the heavy fog that enveloped portions of the area in the late afternoon today.
My obsession with aviation continues. Those of you who appreciate this, like I do, please have a look. Those who think: “well, it looks like just an airplane to me,” please be patient and wait for my next post The following photos were snapped Tuesday night.
I used an 800mm lens for last night’s setting sun, seen from Bayswater street in East Boston. I then turned the camera around and photographed this jet lineup, with Cape Air leading the big boys.
I snapped this at approximately 4:45pm today and yes, I had the luck of the Irish on my side as an Aer Lingus jet passed by the rising moon. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Shot with a Canon 800mm with a 1.4X extender.
I just left a return visit to St. Maarten’s Maho Beach, the aviation enthusiast’s paradise. I first visited the infamous, relatively short runway at Princess Juliana Airport, in 2004. If you have not seen any photos of the jet arrivals at this beach, then you really are missing something. People come from all over the world to experience the exciting landings and the even more hair raising departures. It was 82 degress fahrenheit when my wife and I trotted over to the Sunset Beach Bar, the unofficial head of the Princess Juliana Airport fan club. These jets arrive only 50 feet overhead of the people watching them. Please see my photo below of a Corsair 747 landing in 2004. The next three photos were snapped this week, including a portrait of me that my wife snapped. My wife and I were using a Canon G11 point and short. I have 2 photos that I snapped of two jet arrivals with vacationers waving to the planes. Again, these were taken with a Canon G11 point and shoot, except of course, for the one Corsair plane landing, that was with a pro camera.