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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Timeline: Cape Girardeau aviation, 1974-1989

Sunday, June 13, 2010

(Photo)
Southeast Missourian archive U.S. Senator Robert Dole brought his vice presidential campaign to Cape Girardeau on Oct. 18, 1976. He greeted people at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport before going to speak at Southeast Missouri State University.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is one of a series of files presenting a timeline of aviation in Cape Girardeau. The timeline accompanies a series of stories on the history of the Cape Girardeau Regional Airport, the first of which was published Sunday, June 13, 2010.

1974

Jan. 22: Airborne bandit flying Cessna 150 lands at municipal airport at 5:10 a.m. and then escapes after leaving behind several thousand dollars' worth of aircraft instruments stolen from Cape Central Airways; police discover several thousand dollars worth of flight instruments on ground near fueling truck but can't find pilot; about that time, they spot him making his getaway in his airplane.

Jan. 28: The traffic control tower at municipal airport becomes operational; the new tower will control air traffic landings and take-offs within a five-mile perimeter.

June 2: Cape Girardeau has experienced increase in population and industrial growth over years because of municipal airport, state Sen. Albert Spradling Jr., D-Cape Girardeau, says; speaking at dedication ceremonies for new traffic control tower at airport, Spradling says city has grown by 28 percent in population and almost 33 percent in industrial expansion, while other parts of Southeast Missouri have declined in both areas.

June 20: The Breakfast Exchange Club has installed a Freedom Shrine in the lobby of municipal airport.

Aug. 9: The bid of Cam Electric Co. of Jackson in the amount of $32,762 for safety and security improvements at the airport has been accepted by the city council; the bid includes the entire project of security fencing and lighting for the control panel in the control tower.

Aug. 22: Another administrative change in Cape Girardeau's departmental operations has been made with elevation of park superintendent Donald R. Horlacher to position of assistant city manager, whose new duties will include management of city affairs at municipal airport; in latter capacity, Horlacher replaces former airport manager, John T. Seesing, president of Cape Central Airways Inc., airport's fixed-base operator.

Sept. 1: The traffic control tower goes on a daily 16-hour operation, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.; the hours had been 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sept. 6: The Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport becomes a full-service airport when the new Instrument Landing System is activated.

Oct. 9: In joint luncheon meeting, Airport Board asks city council to repair or replace two wooden hangars at municipal airport and repair flight hangar; possibility of constructing additional facilities is briefly touched upon; after considerable discussion, it is agreed that Airport Board would again meet with fixed-base operator, Cape Central Airways Inc., pertaining to firm's views on paying higher rent if buildings are restored.

Nov. 29: A $16,400 federal grant to help finance purchase of a new firefighting and rescue vehicle to serve municipal airport has been awarded Cape Girardeau by the U.S. Department of Transportation; the grant will pay 75 percent of the cost of the new vehicle.

1975

Jan. 23: Circuit court jury clears the city of Cape Girardeau and Cape Central Airways of responsibility for the loss of hangars and equipment in a hangar fire at the airport in 1971. Owners of two planes and radio equipment stored in the hangar at the time of the fire had filed suit against the city and the air company to collect more than $110,000 in damages.

Feb. 11: Cape Girardeau businessman is killed when his twin-engine airplane crashes in dense fog into muddy field about one mile south of Highway 74 and about 3 1/2 miles west of Interstate 55 interchange with Highway 74; pilot is identified as Herman C. Todt, 58, president of Todt Industrial Supply.

Feb. 16: New dimension in traffic control has been added to Troop E of Missouri State Highway Patrol; Cessna Skylane 182 airplane is now patrolling skies above Southeast Missouri; this is first time patrol has had plane stationed in Troop E.

Feb. 28: Aircraft Exterior Co., a private industry in a wooden hangar at municipal airport, has made extensive repairs to the building at its own expense and also is making efforts to correct possible fire hazards as outlined by fire chief Charles F. Mills;. discussion of the dangers of having such a painting operation in a city airport had been the subject of discussion among city officials, the Municipal Aiprort Board, the fire department and the owner of the company for some time.

March 25: A pilot takes off from Grain Valley Airport near Kansas City in a glider; he is cut loose from his tow plane at 2,000 feet and rides the air currents for five hours and 27 minutes, landing at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; once down, the planes are removed from the motorless plane, and the vehicle is taken by truck and trailer back to the Kansas City airport.

April 12: Cape Girardeau surgeon Dr. John T. Crowe and his son, David P. Crowe, 23, a dental student at Kansas City, are injured when their single-engine, two-passenger aircraft falls to the ground shortly after takeoff from a private landing strip on the east edge of Painton, Mo., in Stoddard County; both are hospitalized in Cape Girardeau with fractures of their lower backs.

June 1: Cape Central Airways celebrates its 25th anniversary with an open house that features airplane rides, displays of company planes and various specials.

June 12: A 43-year-old Cape Girardeau man flying a specially built racing plane to an air show is killed when the aircraft crashes into power lines and explodes while taking off at night from Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield, Mo.; the victim is Winston R. Fraser.

June 23: A family reunion takes a tragic twist when four members of a Dumas, Texas, family are killed in a rending airplane crash on Highway 34, 10 miles west of Lutesville, Mo.; killed were Raymond and Joyce Dillow, and her parents, Elwin S. Corbin and Delma Corbin; they were returning to Dumas after attending a reunion of the Conrad family at Whitewater Church; Raymond Dillow was piloting the plane, which left the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport around 6 a.m.

June 17: A Sand Springs, Okla., man is forced to make an emergency landing during the night on Interstate 55, 10 miles south of Cape Girardeau, when the plane he is flying runs out of gasoline; An Ozark Airlines pilot helps Bill Welch move the craft from the highway, refuel the plane and fly it to the municipal airport within an hour after the landing.

July 31: New skid unit firetruck recently received and tested by city firemen is moved to its permanent home in garage at municipal airport; truck, complete with dry powder and foam capabilities along with accessory gear and radio equipment, was purchased for about $13,000 through 75-25 federal grant arranged through branch of Federal Aviation Administration.

Aug. 5: Official request for termination of her lease for Cockpit Restaurant at Municipal Airport has been received by city from operator, Mildred Hermann, and her attorney, A.M. Spradling Jr.; request had been anticipated, since Hermann and Spradling have said business has failed to show profit.

Aug. 20: Assistant city manager Donald R. Horlacher, who also manages city affairs at municipal airport, has resigned to become aviation security specialist with Federal Aviation Agency at Lambert Field in St. Louis; city park superintendent Robert E. Gass will take over management of city's airport affairs and will be elevated to post of park-airport manager; no replacement for Horlacher's post at city hall has been named.

Aug. 23: Six-month lease under which Mr. and Mrs. David Roth of Cape Girardeau will operate restaurant at municipal airport has special terms, including responsibility for maintenance of premises and city equipment; business will be known as Airport Galley Inc. and should Roths determine restaurant isn't lucrative, they will have privilege of resigning as operators at end of six-month period.

Sept. 1: Increase in fuel costs and decrease in passenger load on some flights prompts Ozark Air Lines Inc. to cut one midday flight from Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport to St. Louis; cutback is part of systemwide schedule reduction.

Oct. 3: A 17-year-old pilot lands a helicopter on the football field at Houck Stadium, where two of his brothers board the craft; a short time later, the helicopter crashes at Arena Park.

Oct. 27: Startled motorists driving along Interstate 55 near the U.S. 61 intersection south of Cape Girardeau are surprised to see the large Goodyear blimp in the sky; another sighting of the dirigible is made over the University Farm.

Nov. 4: Southeast Missouri State University president Dr. Robert E. Leestamper, Dean David A. Strand and Dr. Charles R. Wiles, director of field services, all escape injury when the plane in which they are riding makes a rough landing at Jefferson City Memorial Hospital; the pilot is unable to lower the nosewheel of the plane but is able to land the craft on two wheels.

Nov. 17: Jackson city officials unanimously vote a resolution authorizing the council to work with the Chamber of Commerce to establish an airport at Jackson; development of a small airport has been discussed periodically by the chamber for several years.

Dec. 16: Two Fort Wayne, Ind., men escape serious injury when their single-engine airplane runs out of fuel on approach to municipal airport and pilot is forced to land plane in field west of Dutchtown; pilot, Richard R. Cimini, suffers laceration on his forehead; his passenger, Bud Dangler, escapes injury.

Dec. 31: David Little and James H. Estes purchase Cape Central Airways from John Seesing.

1976

Feb. 11: A Federal Aviation Agency airplane experiencing engine problems lands using only one of its engines at municipal airport.

Feb. 24: Bob Marietta, pilot of a single-engine Cessna 150, makes a forced landing on Illinois Highway 146 two miles east of Cape Girardeau; after setting down on the highway flying east to west, he is forced off the shoulder by a motorist; the plane's wheels sink into the soft shoulder, flipping the craft onto its nose, leaving the tail sections only inches from an overhead power line.

May 15: At the Missouri Pilots Association awards banquet, part of he MPA's 23rd annual convention being staged in Cape Girardeau, Missourian reporter and photographer Garland D. "Frony" Fronabarger is given the 1976 MPA Media Award for this journalistic contribution to the development of aviation.

June 16: An Air Force X-24A, an experimental airplane that flies without wings, is on display through Saturday at the Town Plaza; the craft is designed for orbital and suborbital missions.

July 5: Failure of the tail rotor causes the crash of a Cape Central Airways helicopter at the Bollinger County Airport near Marble Hill, Mo.; pilot Jamie E. Esteis is slightly injured, suffering a broken hand.

July 9: Mrs. Rush H. Limbaugh Jr. of Cape Girardeau is participating for the 10th year in the 29th annual Powder Puff Derby; she is a chief tower timer at Nashville, Tenn.

Aug. 13: An unexpected $154,659 lands on the doorstep of city hall, money that will likely be used to place a water tower for firefighting at the municipal airport; the money is an apportionment from the FAA for airport development.

Oct. 3: It is learned that Ozark Air Lines plans to cut one of four daily flights into the municipal airport. It is a flight from St. Louis. Ozark last week announced plans to institute DC-9 jet service into Marion, Ill., service which local leaders recall as being promised when voters here authorized bonds to extend the runway.

Oct. 6: Gary Campbell of Fort Wayne, Ind., pilot of a hawker-Hurricane single-engine airplane, walks away from a forced landing about noon in a soybean field about midway between Marquette Manufacturing Co. and the municipal airport; the unexpected landing was caused by fuel starvation; the craft is a specially made five-eighths scale of the World War II fighter plane.

Nov. 29: A visual landing air system for pilots has been approved by the FAA for installation at municipal airport; technically called a Visual Approach Slope Indicator, the system of lights will be placed at the end of the runway to help pilots coming in on instruments to make an early visual sighting of the runway.

1977

Jan. 18: A Twin Cessna plane owned by Auction-Air Inc. makes a successful emergency landing at the municipal airport as city firefighters stand by to assist; the nose wheel of the plane doesn't lock in place and can't support any weight; it is necessary for the pilot to hold the nose of the plane up after landing and allow it to slow down.

Jan. 19: Objections from two private pilots to a proposed ordinance requiring city licensing of people involved in some practices at municipal airport are instrumental in getting the city council to table the rules; the ordinance had been proposed at the request of Cape Central Airways, which complained to the Municipal Airport Board that moonlighters were unfairly competing with their services, including charters and pilot instruction.

Jan. 28: An airplane with six passengers aboard lands again at municipal airport shortly after takeoff, when a fire breaks out in one of the plane's two electrical inverters; the plane is owned by Tiffany Industries Inc. of St. Louis; there are no injuries.

Feb. 27: This month marks the ninth year that Auction-Air Inc., owned by George Meikle, has operated at municipal airport; in that time, the business has sold 9,226 aircraft.

March 15: Air-Illinois suspends its flight service to Cape Girardeau because declining passenger volume doesn't justify the cost of providing security screening here; the airline, however, is keeping its office at municipal airport open at least until April 24.

March 23: The question of who pays for expanding hangar space at municipal airport when it benefits a private business, but also benefits the public through increased airport service, arises at a meeting of the Cape Girardeau City Council, the Municipal Airport Board and Cape Central Airways; both the city government and the airways company agree to submit proposals for airport expansion after a three-hour discussion.

April 4: Federal funds of $147,138 will be available during the coming fiscal year to improve the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport under the Airport Development Aid Program.

April 24: Air-Illinois resumes service to Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport after postponing the introduction of its systemwide security system; service resumes with an additional flight to Memphis, Tenn.

July 26: Cape Central Airways and city appear to be on collision course concerning 10-year-old municipal airport management agreement which city council refuses to renew; council members agree they are prepared to risk court test of agreement, which pays company $700 monthly for duties city has performed since 1974.

Aug. 10: Cape Girardeau will become wholesale distribution center for seven-state area for Cessna Aircraft; facility, to be at municipal airport, is division of South Aire Inc., long-established Cessna distributor at Memphis, Tenn., for Midwest.

Sept. 10: A transformer providing power for the navigational aids and lighting system at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport malfunctioned last night, disrupting air service until power is restored at 12:15 a.m. today; an Ozark Airlines flight was canceled as a result of the malfunction; one other airplane owned by a local industry had to go to a St. Louis airport.

Sept. 19: Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport's control tower, operated by the FAA, is one of 73 nationwide that might be closed for failing to meet the agency's test for continued operation; the FAA will hold public hearings in October to hear comments on the threatened closure.

Sept. 22-23: Airmen from eight states are in Cape Girardeau for a two-day Cessna Pilot Center field seminar, sponsored by the Cessna Aircraft Co., which recently moved its single-engine Cessna distributorship for the area to the municipal airport.

Oct. 4: General aviation funds totaling almost $146,000 have been set aside for commercial airport improvements at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, Federal Aviation Agency has announced; Robert E. Gass, airport manager and parks superintendent, said that $145,917 funding will be used for installation of water tower at airport for firefighting purposes and, possibly, for enlarging ramp area south of Cape Central Airways facilities.

Oct. 7: Proposed closing by Federal Aviation Administration of municipal airport control tower, along with 71 other towers across country, prompts Cape Girardeau delegation to attend FAA hearing in Kansas City in opposition to plan.

Nov. 1: An Oklahoma business has proposed locating a facility at municipal airport, which would specialize in the overhauling of airplane engines.

Nov. 5: An Indianapolis, Ind., man brings his single-engine airplane to a safe halt after its left main landing gear collapses upon landing at municipal airport; the pilot is uninjured and only slight damage is done to the left wing of the plane.

Nov. 21: Off-duty air traffic controllers set up informational picket at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport and airports nationwide in attempt to inform public of controllers' contract dispute with Federal Aviation Administration; contract negotiations between controllers and FAA were initiated last May and ended in mid-September, when FAA walked out on bargaining session.

Dec. 11: The Scott County Court, unhappy with what it considers the lack of Johnson grass control at municipal airport, is preparing to send a letter to Cape Girardeau city manager W.G. Lawley, asking the city to "eradicate the Johnson grass, and to comply with Missouri state law."

1978

Jan. 4: Brentwood, Tenn., student pilot on solo cross-country training flight escapes injury when nose gear of his small aircraft collapses during landing at municipal airport; pilot, Leonard R. Craver, emerges unscathed after his Beech 180 aircraft skids about 200 feet along runway before coming to rest near edge of runway.

Feb. 2: Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents votes approval for the acquisition of a government surplus DC-3; cost of the plane will the $500, but the estimate to refurbish it with 26 passenger seats and new instrumentation is about $20,000; the plane is a surplus FAA plane now based in Oklahoma; it is estimated the craft will make about 60 trips per year carrying athletic teams.

April 22: Federal Aviation Agency flight service station at municipal airport reported unusual number of incidents involving aircraft Friday and today; two small private planes en route to Cape Girardeau were forced to make emergency landings in farm fields on Friday.

Aug. 30: St. Louis man piloting small aircraft is injured when his plane develops engine trouble shortly after takeoff from municipal airport and he attempts emergency landing; Edward E. Hartline, 65, suffers back injury in mishap.

Sept. 9: Pair of World War II planes -- medium patrol torpedo bomber and pilot trainer -- are on display at municipal airport during Aviation Day observance; other crafts are also on display in afternoon.

Dec. 1: Demolition crews topple oldest hangar at municipal airport; cost of repairing unused building was more than structure was worth.

1979

Jan. 3: As a result of the recent deregulation of the airline industry and the subsequent reduction of federal subsidy on some routes, Ozark Air Lines Inc. is considering limiting or eliminating service to Cape Girardeau within the next few years; in such a case, Air Illinois, the other scheduled passenger and freight line serving Cape Girardeau, has indicated it would expand service between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis to fill the void left by Ozark.

Jan. 28: Some 60 pilots meet at municipal airport to voice strong opposition to proposed airspace restrictions in name of safety, following last year's airliner-private plane crash at San Diego.

Jan. 28: Twin-engine Cessna aircraft is damaged but none of the four people aboard is injured when plane's nose landing gear malfunctions and is brought down at municipal airport in safe emergency landing; the aircraft is owned and piloted by Dr. James E. Palen of Cape Girardeau.

April 7: The daughter-in-law and granddaughter of Mrs. H.B. Newman of Cape Girardeau are among six people who died in an airplane crash about 10 miles east of Kankakee, Ill.; Mrs. David Newman, 40, and her daughter, Allison, 16, are en route to Lakeworth, Fla., when the plane crashes into a farm after leaving Chicago's Midway Airport minutes before.

May 29: Justin, Texas, man escapes injury in afternoon when his single-engine Cessna 182 airplane stalls shortly after takeoff from municipal airport and crash-lands in field; pilot L.E. Clark walks away from mishap uninjured.

June 23: Related to the strike of Cape Girardeau firefighters, their refusal to offer stand-by fire protection for Ozark Air Lines flights into municipal airport has forced cancellation of all Ozark flights here until service is reinstated; meanwhile, city manager W.G. Lawley calls firemen's actions an "unlawful strike in Missouri; a work stoppage which can have fairly serious consequences."

Sept. 10: Crowd of more than 3,000 attends air show sponsored by Cape Girardeau Pilots Club at municipal airport; exhibits include model aircraft, experimental planes, home-built aircraft in various stages, older vintage planes and helicopters; club is assisted in putting on show by Chapter 453 of Experimental Aircraft Association.

Oct. 25: Dr. Edward Askew, a St. Louis-area doctor who had spent many weekends filling in for the emergency room staff at Southeast Missouri Hospital in Cape Girardeau, is killed when his twin-engine Beechcraft airplane goes down near Fordyce, Ark.

Nov. 2: Ozark Air Lines officials say a Civil Aeronautics Board essential airport transportation recommendation released this week has nothing to do with the company's decision to eliminate one of three flights between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis.

Nov. 18: After several months of delays, the Southeast Missouri State University's DC-3 is delivered to school administrators at the municipal airport; the aircraft, which will be used by university groups -- including athletic teams, administrators and alumni groups -- will be based in Carbondale, Ill., under an agreement between Southeast and Southern Illinois University.

Dec. 18: With some reservations, the Cape Girardeau City Council orders that a proposed ordinance designed to give the city enforcement powers to regulate commercial operations at the airport be forwarded to the Airport Board for its consideration; the ordinance is the result of complaints by the airport's fixed-base operator that flight instructions are being given at the airport by instructors who don't have business offices there.

Dec. 21: A twin-engine aircraft is slightly damaged when it is forced to make an emergency landing after departing Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the Cessna 402, which is destined for Poplar Bluff, Mo., with mail, circles the airport for about 30 minutes to burn up fuel before landing.

1980

Jan. 16: Three daily nonstop flights from Cape Girardeau to St. Louis will be added as of Feb. 1 by Air Illinois, it is announced; the new schedule will give Cape Girardeau the only nonstop service to and from St. Louis.

Feb. 19: Jack C. Tallman of Cairo, Ill., suffers cuts and an injured left hand when he crashes his light airplane three miles west of the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; Tallman, who is alone in the plane, walks a mile from the crash to Highway 25 near Dutchtown, where Ronnie Eifert of Chaffee, Mo., picks him up and drives him to a hospital for treatment.

March 19: The last of four hangars built as part of Harris Field is demolished, leaving only one of the field's original 40 buildings still standing at the airport (hospital building).

Sept. 5: A member of the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team, in Cape Girardeau for Aviation Day, jumps at Houck Stadium, delivering the game ball for the season opening Cape Girardeau Central football game against Roosevelt High of St. Louis.

Oct. 27: A large crowd greets the first DC-9 jet ever to land at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the arrival also marks the end of Ozark Air Lines' turboprop aircraft service to the city.

Dec. 9: The Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission has approved a grant of $14,817 for the city of Cape Girardeau to be used in obtaining a federal grant for improvements at the municipal airport; the state grant has been matched by a similar amount from the city to secure a Federal Aviation Administration grant totaling $260,711.

1981

Feb. 18: Once again the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport Board has suggested the city adopt an ordinance restricting commercial activities at the airport, and once again the Cape Girardeau City Council has backed off the subject.

March 15: Members of a local air traffic controllers union begin informational picketing at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport after their contract with the Federal Aviation Administration expired at midnight Saturday; similar picketing by members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization begins at airports throughout the county.

June 15: The cost of operating the FAA's flight tower at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport will exceed benefits by $737,790 over the next 14 years, says a General Accounting Office report that criticizes the FAA for failing to discontinue or reduce operating hours of some airport traffic control towers; the FAA-staffed tower here is one of 66 nationwide recommended for closure in the GAO report.

June 29: Cape Girardeau officials voice their protests to the pending plan of the Federal Aviation Administration to close the control tower at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; Cape Girardeau representatives and officials from three other Missouri communities where the FAA has proposed tower closures let their opposition be known to Sen. Thomas F. Eagleton, who called the meeting in Columbia, Mo., to solicit opinions on the FAA plan.

Aug. 3: Air traffic controllers at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport join in a nationwide strike, forcing Ozark Air Lines, the largest commercial carrier operating here, to ground scheduled flights to and from Cape Girardeau.

Aug. 5: Only one striking air traffic controller heeds Reagan administration's ultimatum and returns to work at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport control tower; four union controllers assigned to airport remain off the job and are awaiting notices from Federal Aviation Administration that they have been terminated.

Aug. 21: The Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport control tower will close at 5 p.m. Aug. 29, and a supervisor and three nonstriking air traffic controllers there will be assigned to other airports in St. Louis; the tower will remain closed for at least 90 days because of the controllers strike while the Federal Aviation Agency reassesses the nation's system of control towers.

Aug. 31: Two Cape Girardeau residents and a Colorado man are killed in the crash of a single-engine Cessna 182 about 20 miles northeast of Durango, Colo.; killed in the crash are Christian R. Hirsch, 23, and his sister, Margaret Ione Hirsch, 21, children of Mr. and Mrs. Robert O. Hirsch of Cape Girardeau, and the pilot, Craig Kolvig, 39, of Durango.

Sept. 8: More than $100,000 in federal grant money is being made available to the city of Cape Girardeau for improvements at municipal airport; the money is part of a $301 million appropriation for fiscal year 1981 for airport development and planning throughout nation.

Sept. 14: Air Illinois resumes three St. Louis round trips from the Cape Girardeau market; the Carbondale-based commuter airline had cut one St. Louis trip last month, due to service curtailment as a result of the air traffic controllers strike.

Sept. 26: The famed Golden Knights, the Army's premiere aerial jump team, returns to Cape Girardeau to help the community celebrate National Aviation Day.

Sept. 28: More than $100,000 worth of improvements will be made in the coming months at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport as a result of the city council resolving at a special meeting to accept a Federal Aviation Administration grant; the money will be used to provide handicap access facilities at the terminal building, an eight-foot lighted supplemental wind-cone for runway 28, and overlay work on a portion of runway 20.

Oct. 20: New federal regulations limiting the number of noncommercial and private aircraft flights out of the nation's airports are concerning local pilots who might not be able to fly when they wish and aviation officials who feel the restrictions could hamper the aviation industry in Cape Girardeau; the FAA guidelines, which went into effect in the face of the continuing nationwide air traffic controllers strike, establish a quota on the number of instrument flights by private aircraft, but place no restrictions on aircraft traveling in VFR (visual flight rating) conditions.

Dec. 29: The FAA has announced that control towers in five airports in Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska -- including Cape Girardeau -- will remain closed for nearly another year while officials recruit and train replacements for fired air traffic controllers.

1982

Jan. 4: Because of an easing in federal security regulations, the Cape Girardeau Police Department is no longer required to dispatch an officer to the municipal airport to monitor the boarding of Ozark and Air Illinois flights; passengers, however, will still have to pass security inspections and will be required to walk through a metal detector before going from the terminal building to the planes.

Jan. 27: Ozark Air Lines has finalized plans to eliminate its Cape Girardeau flights; Air Illinois, the other scheduled carrier serving the municipal airport, plans to increase its service here with one additional flight daily.

Feb. 25: The FAA says it will decide next fall whether to reopen the air traffic control tower at the Cape Girardeau airport.

March 19: Homer W. Keller, 52, of Jackson, vice president of Atlas Plastics Corp., is in critical but stable condition at a Richmond, Ind., hospital, following a plane crash yesterday that killed another man and seriously injured the pilot; Keller suffered a fractured knee and ankle and internal injuries when the twin-engine Cessna 421 crashed in fog about a mile short of a runway on a landing approach at Richmond.

March 31: Air Illinois, the regional airline based at Carbondale, Ill., appears to be one of the fastest-growing industries associated with Cape Girardeau; company president Roger Street reports March has been a record-setting month for Air Illinois.

April 9: Neither the pilot nor the passenger of a small, single-engine airplane are injured when the craft makes an emergency landing in a field just west of the Procter & Gamble Paper Products Co. plant north of Cape Girardeau; the Naperville, Ill., pilot declares a "mayday" shortly after 4 p.m., when his engine loses oil pressure shortly after crossing the Mississippi River from Illinois into Missouri.

April 24: At 6:22 a.m., Ozark Airlines terminates its service to the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, when its last plane, a 100-passenger DC-9 jet, takes off; Ozark service to Cape Girardeau began 31 years ago.

April 25: Air Illinois has announced a major change of ownership within the company; the Carbondale-based airline announced that the Saad Jabr family, which held a controlling interest in Air Illinois since last fall, has sold all shares it held to employees, officers and other shareholders of the airline.

May 17: Drury Development Corp., requests permission from the city to install an underground jet fuel storage tank next to the company's recently constructed hangar at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; Cape Central Airways is now the exclusive aviation fuel outlet at the airport.

June 7: The Cape Girardeau City Council, by a 5-2 vote, agrees to allow Drury Development Corp. to install underground fuel storage tanks, contingent on approval by the Airport Board, in an area specified for that purpose in an existing master plan for the airport; the Airport Board had already recommended denial of Drury company's original request to install a fuel storage system at its private hangar.

June 20: Two Greenville, S.C., women escape injury in the morning when the landing gear on the small plane they are flying breaks off upon landing at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the pilot decides to land her plane here after the aircraft develops electrical problems.

Aug. 2: The city council accepts and approves a $347,567.37 bid from Girardeau Contractors for a new taxiway; 90 percent of the project will be funded through the FAA through a tax on aviation fuel.

Aug. 3: An addition to the terminal area at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport is taking shape, part of a sizable improvement package at the airport that includes runway work, taxiway work and the addition to the security area at the terminal.

Aug. 19: David Little, president of Cape Central Airways, suffers a sprained ankle and an injury to a vertebra when the small plane he is piloting crashes at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the crash occurs when the engine of the single-passenger ultralight glider fails on approach to a runway.

Sept. 13: The control tower at the Cape Girardeau airport is among 43 towers that will not be reopened; towers at 80 small airports were closed because of last year's air traffic controllers strike.

Sept. 28: The White House says Air Force Two, which was to bring Vice President Bush to Cape Girardeau on Thursday, will be landed at Blytheville Air Force Base, Ark., because the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport runway is too short to accommodate takeoff when the Boeing 707 fuel tanks are full; from Blytheville, Bush instead will flown by helicopter to the Cape Girardeau airport.

Oct. 10: The fifth annual Aircraft Owners and Pilots Club of Cape Girardeau air show is staged at the municipal airport; the event, in observance of National Aviation Day, brings a great number of aircraft from vintage to current types, including both military and civilian, to the port.

Dec. 5: Air Illinois has requested a reduction of service to Cape Girardeau, asking the Civil Aeronautics Board to allow it to eliminate one of its four daily flights to St. Louis; however, the airline is also proposing expansion of its service to Memphis.

Dec. 19: Starting next year, it will be possible to travel between Cape Girardeau and Chicago within two hours and 40 minutes by flying Air Illinois from the municipal airport here to Lambert International in St. Louis, then boarding another Air Illinois flight for O'Hare Field in Chicago; effective Jan. 1, Air Illinois will place its 73-passenger BAC 1-11 jet in service between St. Louis and Chicago.

Dec. 31: Cape Girardeau trucking company proprietor Jerry Lipps purchases Cape Central Airways from David Little and James H. Estes.

1983

Jan. 4: Airplanes parked this winter at the municipal airport will share part of their ramp with some nonflying vehicles; the Cape Girardeau City Council authorizes a lease agreement with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which will permit that agency to store as many as 150 mobile homes at the airport; the mobile homes will be used for temporary housing by residents of a 30-county area affected by recent flooding.

Jan. 25: Two people aboard a Beechcraft Barron escape injury, when the aircraft makes a crash landing at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; landing gear on twin-engine craft apparently fails to function, and plane crashes and burns on one of airport's runways.

May 4: Two Chanute, Kan., women escape with minor injuries when their single-engine airplane crashes shortly after taking off from the municipal airport; the two are participating in the third annual 2,100-mile Shangri-La Grand Pris Air Race.

May 27: The city of Cape Girardeau has received a $681,000 federal Department of Transportation grant for improvements to the municipal airport; planned improvements include acquisition of about four acres to extend the safety area on runway 10, the main runway.

June 23: Three people are killed and another is seriously burned in a fiery plane crash on a farm near Benton, Mo., in the evening; the pilot of the single-engine plane, Billy W. Farrell, 47, of Benton, and passengers James W. Sidener, 37, of Cape Girardeau, and Matthew D. Sidener, 9, of Pocahontas, Ill., die when the craft crashes in a field on the Gary Beggs farm about five miles south of Benton; a third passenger, James Sidener Jr., 14, is in stable condition at a St. Louis area hospital with second- and third-degree burns.

July 11: An Air Force T-38 jet trainer attracts plenty of attention on the parking lot of West Park Mall.

July 29: Britt Airways Inc., one of the largest regional air carriers in the nation, announces it is expanding operations to the Cape Girardeau area, with three round trips daily to St. Louis beginning Sept. 1.

Aug. 7: Air Illinois has added another flight between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis; this flight is an evening schedule, arriving at Cape Girardeau at 7:40 p.m. and returning to St. Louis at 7:50 p.m.; Air Illinois now provides six flights daily to St. Louis and five daily from St. Louis.

Aug. 8: A Federal Aviation Administration plan to close down the Cape Girardeau flight service station is in a holding pattern; but David L. Little, president of Cape Central Airways Inc., is optimistic the station may remain here.

Aug. 14: The only B-29 Super Fortress still flying in the world lands at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, along with a B-24 bomber; 15 to 20 World War II vintage airplanes will be on display Tuesday through Thursday as part of an air show sponsored by the Bootheel Squadron of the Confederate Air Force.

Sept. 1: Britt Airways begins air passenger service to and from Cape Girardeau; there are three flights daily from here to St. Louis and two to Paducah, Ky.

Sept. 10: Thousands of eager spectators brave a hot September day to attend Aviation Day at municipal airport; highlight of the day is the appearance by the Blue Angels, the Navy flight demonstration team; the show will continue tomorrow.

Sept. 21: The Cape Girardeau City Council authorizes a contract for continued improvements at municipal airport; work will include the asphalt overlay of about half of the older runway to strengthen it and make it more usable, the acquisition and construction of a wind cone, and making certain adjustments to the terminal building to make it handicapped accessible; the council also accepts a federal grant that provides for construction of the last taxiway parallel with the main runway and construction of a double box culvert to provide accessibility over a ditch.

Sept. 23: City firefighters and police are called to Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport for the emergency landing of a helicopter; the craft crashes about 1 p.m., but there are no fire and no injuries to pilot John F. Lowey of Aerospatiale Helicopter Inc., the only person on board.

Oct. 11: An Air Illinois plane -- a British-made, Twin-engine, Hawker Siddeley -- crashes in Perry County, Ill., about five miles northeast of Pinckneyville during a lightning storm; among the passengers killed were Judy Chantos, 35, and her 2-year-old son, Jonathan, who were on their way to Jackson to visit her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Lennington.

Nov. 15: Britt Airways Inc. increases its scheduled flights from Cape Girardeau to St. Louis from three to five round trips.

Dec. 16: All Air Illinois flights are canceled at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; officials of the Carbondale, Ill.-based airline say all flights have been canceled until at least next month as a result of a Federal Aviation Administration investigation into the airline's operations after an Oct. 11 crash of an Air Illinois plane.

1984

Jan. 3: Cape Girardeau pilot Danny Borchelt lands safely in a field near the Mississippi River just south of Cape Girardeau after the small airplane he is flying develops engine trouble; Borchelt and his two passengers are uninjured, and there is little, if any, damage the Cessna 172 he is flying.

Jan. 10: While no decision has been made, officials of ResortAir, a St. Louis-based regional airline, continues to express interest in serving Cape Girardeau.

March 11: Air Illinois resumes turboprop service between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis; the carrier's plan to resume flights at the end of February were delayed by a snowstorm.

May 3: An Army airplane en route from Fort Rucker, Ala., to Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., lands safely at the municipal airport after developing an engine problem; all six passengers aboard the U-21 are unharmed.

June 6: Chris Kurianowicz of Cape Girardeau has been selected as one of the top five precision flyers in the United States and qualifies as a member of the Precision Flight Team, which competes internationally.

Oct. 17: As the result of action by the city council, the air traffic control tower at municipal airport is expected to reopen Dec. 1; the council approves resolutions entering into a contract with the FAA and Barton Air Traffic Control Inc. of Murfreesboro, Tenn., which will actually operate the tower; the city will be reimbursed by the federal government for the cost of operating the tower.

1985

Jan. 11: Robert E. Gass, Cape Girardeau city parks superintendent and airport manager, announces his resignation from those posts effective March 1.

Jan. 15: The air traffic control tower reopens under the Federal Aviation Agency Tower Contracting Program; the tower had been closed more than three years.

Jan. 16: The Southeast Missouri State University men's basketball team and others aboard the university's DC-3 aircraft spend some anxious moments when the plane makes a shaky but safe landing after icing up as it approaches Quincy (Ill.) Municipal Airport; the Indians are en route to Quincy for a game with the Quincy College Hawks.

April 14: Concerned about the retention of the flight service station at municipal airport, the Airport Transportation Committee of the Cape Girardeau Chamber of Commerce has initiated a letter-writing campaign; letters are being directed to representatives in the federal government, business leaders and to members of the chamber.

May 12: The administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration is being urged to designate the Cape Girardeau flight service station as an "attendant station" in an effort to keep it open; the station is scheduled to close in 1987 as part of the planned closing of numerous such stations nationwide.

June 27: The pilot of a single-engine plane feels winds at 11,000 feet over Cape Girardeau County several minutes before they kick up in Cape Girardeau, and he is forced to land his six-seat private aircraft at municipal airport; the door of pilot Grady Person's plane pops open and charts fly around the cockpit; he holds door with one hand and manages to land the plane safely.

July 28: A private airplane is forced to land on a Mississippi River sandbar south of Gorham, Ill., when it runs out of fuel.

Aug. 30: Cape Girardeau police arrest and charge a Paducah, Ky., man with violation of a city ordinance after the helicopter he is flying sets down on private property in the vicinity of the 700 block of South Kingshighway; city ordinance requires a permit to land aircraft in the city of Cape Girardeau; the only places aircraft may land without special permits are at the municipal airport and the helicopter pads at Saint Francis Medical Center and Southeast Missouri Hospital.

Oct. 26: What was to have been celebration culminating 11 years of work devoted to an aviation hobby ends in tragedy, when the airplane built by a Cape Girardeau physician plunges to the ground, killing the Oklahoma man who is test flying it; the small, rear-prop aircraft crashes onto the shoulder of northbound Interstate 55, three-quarters of a mile north of Scott City at about 10 a.m., only minutes after it becomes airborne for the first time; the pilot, James L. Daniel, 46, of Tulsa, is pronounced dead at the scene; the aircraft was built by Dr. John T. Crowe.

Nov. 19: The Cape Girardeau Airport Advisory Board has recommended the city council develop plans for a new terminal building at municipal airport, a move that could ultimately require voter approval of a seven-cent levy to finance and maintain it.

Nov. 20: By a vote of 6-1, the Cape Girardeau City Council authorizes continued participation in the Federal Aviation Administration Tower Contracting Program, despite some problems in retaining air traffic controllers here.

1986

Feb. 3: City officials say the air traffic control tower could be put out of operation by the inability of the private contractor operating the tower to obtain necessary liability insurance coverage; the tower is operated by Barton Air Traffic Control Inc. of Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Feb. 11: People Express Airline and Frontier Airline Inc. institute special prices and connecting service to and from their systems to the Britt Airways system, which serves Cape Girardeau; the arrangement makes more than 100 cities throughout the country available to the residents of the 26 cities that Britt serves in the Midwest for fares as low as $79.

March 5: Prompted by the inability of the private contractor operating the air traffic control tower to obtain more than $1 million in liability insurance coverage, the city council votes to lower insurance requirements to that level; the council agrees to measures amending the air traffic control tower agreement by reducing the insurance requirement from $20 million to $1 million and the monthly payment to the contractor from $10,703 to $10,370.

March 19: One survey is already underway and another will be conducted next month under the direction of the Chamber of Commerce's air transportation committee to help assess the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport's current market and what can be done to improve it.

April 11: The pilot of a single-engine crop-duster escapes injuries when his plane crashes and burns in a field east of Lee Avenue in south Jackson; the pilot, Ken McDowell of Charleston, Mo., begins to lose power after applying a load of fertilizer on several corn fields south of the city; he is unable to maintain altitude above the tree line and crash lands his Thrush 600 Commander.

May 13: Area pilots are being asked to sign a petition urging a delay in the closing of the flight service station; closing of the services is scheduled for Nov. 15.

May 15: An undisclosed amount of cash was taken in a burglary at the Cape Central Airways office at the municipal airport office; burglars entered a building at the airport earlier in the week; they then broke into the Cape Central Airways office by breaking a doorknob and lock.

June 1: Nearly 1,000 pilots signed petitions stating they would like to delay the closing of Cape Girardeau's flight service station; armed with these, U.S. Rep. Bill Emerson will testify at a Senate subcommittee hearing on the subject next week.

June 11: Republic Express, a commuter flight service in Memphis, Tenn., is interested in locating a commuter flight facility at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport to provide flights between the two cities.

July 16: The city of Cape Girardeau has been awarded a $428,972 matching grant for the municipal airport; the city's match will be 10 percent; funds will be used to resurface the aircraft parking apron and taxiway, install taxiway lighting and the replace airport beacon, which dates back to World War II; the grant is from the Federal Aviation Administration's Airport Improvement Program.

Aug. 1: City and state legislators turn out in the morning at the municipal airport for the ribbon-cutting ceremony and inaugural flight of Republic Express Airlines.

Aug. 17: Curtis Lee Maddox, returning from an outing to Current River, lands his helicopter on the empty lot across the road from Shoney's restaurant to come in and have a bite to eat before continuing home to Harrisburg, Ill.; Maddox gets his meal, and almost a night's lodging in the city jail; police arrest him for violating a city ordinance that prohibits landing aircraft in the city limits without permission; Maddox posts $150 bond and continues on his way.

Sept. 2: Cape Girardeau officials revise the city's policy regarding unauthorized helicopters within the city limits; the new policy requires pilots to obtain authorization to land from the assistant city manager or, in his absence, the police chief; if an authorized landing occurs, the pilot will be instructed to move the helicopter to either the municipal airport or an approved helipad; if that isn't done, the pilot will be charged with violating city regulations, and a complaint will be filed with the FAA.

Oct. 26: Trans World Express begins offering flights between Cape Girardeau and St. Louis; 10 additional flights per day are added at the Cape Girardeau airport; Trans World Express joins Britt and Northwest Airlink (formerly Republic Express) at the Cape Girardeau port servicing people in Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois.

Nov. 16: It is announced that the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport's flight service station is scheduled to close next fall.

Nov. 23: Sikeston, Mo., pilot Jim Cloud escapes unscathed when his twin-engine aircraft crash lands at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport.

1987

Feb. 1: Britt Airlines has suspended flights here temporarily; on Jan. 28, the FAA grounded 12 of Britt's twin-engine aircraft, about a fourth of the airline's fleet.

Feb. 2: The city council authorizes an agreement with Ackerly Airport Advertising of Seattle for a courtesy telephone center, providing director service to any of 12 advertised businesses, at the municipal airport

Feb. 5: Britt Airways Inc. is forced to halt commuter service from a hub in St. Louis which served Cape Girardeau and 12 other cities because the company is losing money in the operation; company officials have decided to permanently pull out of St. Louis and the smaller cities in five states.

March 6: Sen. John Danfort, R-Mo., is introducing a bill that would change the status of the Cape Girardeau airport, designating it a primary airport; as such, the port would be eligible for the annual entitlement of about $200,000 in addition to the federal money already being received.

April 6: Taking up some of the slack left when Britt Airlines pulled out of the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, Transworld Express adds a 7:10 a.m. flight to St. Louis to its schedule.

April 23: A house appropriation bill amendment, which would have cut funding needed to close the federal flight service station in Cape Girardeau and others nationwide, is withdrawn by its sponsor; the action is taken after the FAA agrees "to defer its activities" on closing the flight service stations pending hearings by a House subcommittee concerning the "safety implications" of such action.

May 20: Officials from Southeast Missouri Hospital announce the addition of an air ambulance service; a Bell Long Ranger II helicopter will be based at the hospital and will begin service about Aug. 1.

June 1: An ad hoc group of area business and civic leaders is calling for major improvements to be made at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport to develop it as a regional facility; leaders say the city is losing jobs because of an antiquated terminal building and the lack of jet service here.

June 17: The Airport Advisory Board has asked city officials to explore the feasibility of the Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority taking over operations of the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the move could provide an expanded tax base for development of the airport into a regional facility.

July 1: State law apparently stands in the way of the recent suggestion that the Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority take over operation of the municipal airport. Saint Francis Medical Center initiates air ambulance service; the AIR EVAC helicoper is based at the hospital and will serve emergency and trauma victims within 70 miles of Cape Girardeau.

July 6: The Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority has requested that the portion of its port site in Scott County and an area to the west, including the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, be designated an enterprise zone.

July 29: Cape Central Airways Inc., fixed-base operator at the municipal airport and the oldest firm of its kind between Memphis and St. Louis, has been acquired by Reggie Hopwood from Jerry Lipps.

Aug. 3: More than 200 people brave a hot morning sun to watch as Southeast Missouri Hospital dedicates its new LifeBeat helicopter air medical service.

Aug. 13: Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration visit the Cape Girardeau flight service station to begin the process of permanently closing the facility; the station is slated to be closed effective Oct. 31.

Aug. 21: A spokesman for the National Weather Service in Kansas City says a private contractor will take over the hourly weather observation readings at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport on Oct. 1.

Sept. 10: Stopping traffic, the Airship Sea World sails over Cape Girardeau, en route from Memphis to an overnight stop at the Parks Metropolitan Airport near Belleville, Ill.

Oct. 1: Mid-America Weather Services of Overland Park, Kan., takes over the duty of providing around-the-clock hourly weather observations at the municipal airport form the FAA's flight service station specialists.

Oct. 20: For the first time since Auction-Air moved its operation to Memphis in 1982, an aircraft auction is staged at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the monthly auction has been re-established by Ella Dowd.

Oct. 31: Control panels are turned off at 6 p.m., signaling the close of the flight service station at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the station opened 27 years ago.

Nov. 24: The recently announced resignation of assistant city manager Jeff Hancock could indirectly lead to the hiring of a full-time airport manager, a job Hancock is handling.

Dec. 7: The city council approves an agreement that calls for the city to lease two spaces on property at municipal airport to Drury Southwest Signs Inc. for billboards at a cost of $2,000 a year for five years.

1988

(Photo)
Southeast Missourian archive President Ronald Reagan arrives in Cape Girardeau aboard Air Force One on Sept. 14, 1988. Coming off the plane with the president at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport are Congressman Bill Emerson of Cape Girardeau, front right; U.S. Senator John Danforth, rear left; and U.S. Senator Christopher "Kit" Bond, rear right. (Photo by Fred Lynch)
Jan. 15: Northwest Airlink starts a new flight schedule, which includes an originating flight out of Cape Girardeau; the new schedule includes one non-stop flight to Memphis and two nonstop inbound flights from Memphis.

Jan. 25: Saint Francis Medical Center is completing a heated hangar adjacent to the medical center's heliport in which to store its Air Evac helicopter.

March 7: The city council agrees to lease additional storage space in the terminal building to Charleen and Wilford Bock, who operate the Hertz Automobile Rental Agency and the gift shop at the airport; the space, totaling 161 square feet, was made available by the closing of the FAA flight service station.

April 5: The Red Baron squadron, made up of four Stearman A-76 biplanes, performs at Cape Girardeau and Sikeston, Mo., helping raise funds for the Kenny Rogers Cerebral Palsy Center in Sikeston, Mo.

April 9: Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport has been designated a "primary airport" and is now eligible for additional federal funding; under provisions of the newly enacted Airport Aid Bill, sponsored by U.S. Sen. John Danforth, the local airport qualifies for up to $300,000 a year in federal airport improvement funds.

April 12: Northwest Airlink is pulling out of the Southeast Missouri market; the airline's final day of service in Cape Girardeau will be May 1; Northwest Airlink has served Cape Girardeau since August 1986; Transworld Express, which goes into St. Louis area, remains at municipal airport.

April 27: A single-engine airplane en route to Cape Girardeau develops engine trouble, lands in a field near Oran, Mo., takes off and makes an uneventful landing at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; no one is injured, and there is no apparent damage to the craft; the incident prompts emergency vehicles to race to the airport, return to Cape Girardeau, and race back in about a 20-minute period.

May 20: A second expansion of a Cape Girardeau enterprise zone to include Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority, Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport and Greater Cape Girardeau Industrial Park on Nash Road has been approved by Missouri Department of Economic Development; the new area is 5.46 square miles and entirely in Scott County.

June 6: The city is taking steps to develop a comprehensive plan for the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, which will detail future capital improvement projects for the facility; 90 percent of the funding would come from the FAA, with the city to provide the other 10 percent.

July 18: Tommy Beeson, of Beeson's Flying Service of Sikeston, Mo., walks away from a plane crash that totals the aircraft; Beeson is at the controls of a Grumman Ag Cat, biplane crop duster, when it clips four guy wires on one of the three radio transmitting towers of KZIM, north of East Cape Girardeau, Ill., in the evening; the craft lands seconds later in a cornfield, but Beeson walks away from the totaled plane with only a small bruise on his shoulder.

July 27: Cape Girardeau officials say a desire to bring the municipal airport into the city limits is the reason behind an effort to annex Interstate 55 right of way in Scott County; Scott City officials view the proposed annexation with alarm, alleging it is a land grab and a prelude to annexing the Southeast Missouri Regional Port site.

Sept. 7: A plaque is unveiled at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport honoring the late Dr. John T. Crowe; the plaque, donated by the Cape Pilots Club and the Regional Commerce and Growth Association reads: "Dr. John T. Crowe, M.D., Pilot and Friend of Aviation 3-26-18 to 2-25-88."

Sept. 26: Around 11 p.m., pilot Lars Andersson safely lands a disabled Piper twin-engine airplane at municipal airport; because the plane's left landing gear doesn't lock in the down position, Andersson holds the plane up on its right landing gear until its landing speed decreases, causing the left wing to touch down on the runway; the plane skids about 100 to 200 feet down the runway before stopping.

Nov. 30: Cape Central Airways has initiated a 24-hour operation, providing support services at the municipal airport that include aircraft sales and service, maintenance, fuel sales, charter service and flight training.

Dec. 19: The city of Cape Girardeau is looking at the possibility of developing a business park at municipal airport; the idea will be explored in the airport master plan now being developed.

Dec. 22: Three people are killed when a Saint Francis Medical Center Air Evac helicopter transporting a youth injured in an automobile accident crashes in heavy fog and burns in a field southwest of Cape Girardeau about 4:30 a.m.; dead are James Rhodes, 7, of Marion, Ill.; flight nurse Karen Scherer, 22, of Anna, Ill., and respiratory therapist Julie Huttegger, 22, of Cape Girardeau; only the pilot, Sheldon Rudzek, 39, of Cape Girardeau, survives the crash.

1989

Jan. 4: A Cape Girardeau Airport Board member tells the board that a manned Federal Aviation Agency flight service station at the airport would have prevented the fatal Dec. 22 air-ambulance helicopter crash. Air ambulance service resumes in the morning at Saint Francis Medical Center; a replacement helicopter arrived late yesterday, and a full ambulance crew is on hand today.

Jan. 23: Coyotes are creating problems at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; there have been numerous sightings of the animals on airport property over the past month and, in one instance, an airplane struck a coyote that crossed into its path on an airport taxiway; state conservation officials say construction of a bigger and better fence around the port could help alleviate the problem.

Jan. 25: Trans World Express announces plans to offer only nonstop flights to St. Louis, effective Jan. 31; the move means that flights originating here will no longer have to stop in Marion, Ill.

Jan. 27: The FAA authorizes a $55,755 grant for a Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport master plan study.

Feb. 18: The Airport Advisory Board has recommended the city begin earmarking funds now for construction of a new airport terminal and look at hiring a full-time airport manager

May 4: Municipal airport is operating in the red, and without increased revenue, the deficit will continue to soar, says assistant city manager Al Stoverink; in addition, the number of boardings here declined in 1988, and the decline is continuing this year.

May 17: An airport adviser says the city should take immediate steps to increase passenger boardings at the municipal airport to avoid losing $300,000 in annual federal funding for the facility; he further suggests the city undertake a marketing program and, if necessary, even subsidize Trans World Express, the lone commuter airline serving Cape Girardeau, in an effort to boost boardings.

May 28: With a shortage of pilots at every level -- from commercial airliners to crop spraying -- becoming critical, Cape Central Airways has declared June "Learn to Fly" month; the company offers all types of flight instruction, ranging from the private pilot license to the Airline Transport Certificate.

June 26: The city has embarked upon a $10,000 advertising campaign to boost passenger boardings at municipal airport and prevent the loss of $300,000 a year in federal funding for the facility; without such effort, the city almost certainly stands to lose the annual federal entitlement funding due to decreased boardings here, says assistant city manager Al Stoverink, who oversees airport operations.

July 1: No one is injured and damage is minimal when a twin-engine airplane skids off the runway at the municipal airport.

July 9: Even while the city is attempting to boost boardings at the municipal airport, Trans World Express, the only commercial air carrier here, has cut back on its daily flights to St. Louis.

July 11: Coffman Associates, a Kansas City consulting firm, recommends that the municipal airport terminal building should be renovated but not replaced at this time; the firm, in its airport master plan, is calling for construction of new airplane hangars to house the ever-more-expensive general aviation aircraft, including corporate planes.

July 21: The new Multi-Service Pilot Center/Automated Weather Station goes on line at Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the system assists pilots with flight planning and fills gap left by the closing of the flight service station two years ago.

Aug. 4: Mark Seesing has been named Cape Girardeau's first full-time airport manager; Seesing, 30, was chosen from among 24 applicants; he currently is assistant general manager at Cape Central Airways, which operates a charter service based at municipal airport.

Aug. 8: Voters approve two annexation proposals that will result in the first major expansion of the Cape Girardeau city limits in 22 years; as a result of the election, the city has annexed both lanes of Interstate 55 from approximately 2,000 feet north of the I-55 and U.S. 61 interchange between Cape Girardeau and Jackson, south to the Cape Girardeau County line, as well as the southbound lane of I-55 from the county line south to the municipal airport in Scott County; also as a result of the election, the city has annexed 159 acres immediately north of the I-55 and U.S. 61 interchange.

Oct. 6: A new Civil Air Patrol squadron is being formed in Cape Girardeau; initially, the squadron will consist only of senior members, those 18 years old and older; as soon as the senior member squadron is organized, staffed and trained, a cadet program will be added.

Oct. 13: The Airport Advisor Board, in a closed session, backs a proposal by the city staff that the city take over operation of the traffic control tower, citing complaints that the company that is paid to run the tower hasn't always provided the required number of traffic controllers.

Oct. 15: About 1,000 people turn out for the Open House and Travel Show at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport.

Oct. 19: Trans World Express, which only recently reinstated a fourth daily flight here, is once again planning to cut back on its flight schedule; effective Oct. 19, TWE will drop its 2:16 p.m. flight, leaving three flights to St. Louis.

Nov. 10: A single-engine airplane crashes and flips over in a wheat field about two miles north of the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport; the pilot, Daniel J. Heneghan, 28, of Crystal Lake, Ill., walks away unscathed.

Dec. 13: No one is injured when the landing gear of a twin-engine Beechcraft airplane collapses after touching down on runway 20 at the municipal airport; the pilot is Bill Carpenter of Stone Mountain, Ga.

(Photo)
Southeast Missourian archive Henry Holliday, left, air traffic controller at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport, and Mark Hetherington, facility manager, stay busy on Dec. 18, 1989 in the airport tower. The city has taken over operation of the airport tower.
Dec. 17: The city takes over operation of the air traffic control tower; it is also seeking to assume control of the weather service station at the municipal airport.

Dec. 28: Christy Smith, 15, of Rantoul, Ill., is the 10,000th person boarding at the Cape Girardeau Municipal Airport this year; with her boarding, Cape Girardeau is assured another $300,000 in federal funding for improvements


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