Here is a great story form John Kinney, former sales rep...........
Dear Mr. Shanks,
Thanks so much for all the updates you have given either by email or jetpiedmont.com. I will also remember the O'Hare story. I never knew that's how it got it's name.
I was so proud to be a 2nd generation Piedmont family member. I guess I really joined PI when my mother Janice Kinney, now Janice Lawton was the receptionist at the org HQ building. (Actually Zeke and Mr. Davis introduced my parents to each other.) I can remember going in Mr. Davis' office as a 5 year old and landing models of Piedmont planes on Mr. Davis' head while I sat in his lap. He was the only man at the time that I knew that had receding hairline. He always took the time to let me land a few on his head. He once told me to be careful as he did not want me to lengthen the runway on his head. He said," land safely, be ontime and treat your customers and employees like family." I was only 5 years old but I did not realize that I had been given the best advice any airline person could ever recieve. The last time I saw him he told me that I could now land those old PI models from any direction as it (his hair) was all gone. That was from as far back as 1962 when that happened and he still remembered it. I also remember when PI got the first of many planes and PI had to be certified by FAA to evacuate them in a specific amount of time. Since some had to be kids and Mom had 5 we were always invited to participate in the evacuations at the old hanger and then go to the BBQ and hear Zeke and the Blades of Grass sing and play.
Next to my family Mr. Davis was the greatest man I ever met. What an honor to have worked for him and known him. I have two picture in my office that I will grab first if there was a fire and the first one is a picture of myself with Mr. Davis and Mr. McGee standing in front of the DC-3 in 1988 in theold ILM hanger celebrating the 40th anniversary of PI. The other is the picture of me on the cover of an annual report. What a honor it was to represent all those great people of Piedmont.
It was the greatest place I ever worked at or ever will. There is not a day that does not go by that I do not stop and think about it. I know that we would have had some problems with today's economy and 9-11 but I have no doubt that PI would have and could have made it. Family atmosphere with employees and customers and quality service never loses in the end.
Please keep me on the list of getting this "newsletter" it was great to see and sad as well at the same time.
Regards and respect,
PS: I thought so much of Dan Brock that I named my first son after him. He was the second coming of Mr. Davis to me.