Comment "My first too." on Trinca Airport, United States

Fri, 12 Feb 2010
My first too.
Anonymous flyer on Trinca Airport view thread
 

I discovered Trinca in the winter of 1961. I was a senior at Netcong HS with a hankering to fly. I drove up to Trinca one day, didn't see anybody until I located the office. Pete was in there with another guy and I asked about flying lessons and how much they cost. Pete told me they were $12 an hour. At the time I could not afford the price of a full hour so Pete offered to give me half-hour lessons. Then he asked if I had ever been up in a plane and I said no. Then Pete said to the other guy there that a guy should not start taking lessons if he had not been up. Then he said he had to take one of the planes up for some exercise and did I want to go along with him. So, he took me up for the better part of a half-hour. The following weekend I started my half-hour lessons. Usually, at the conclusion of the lesson Pete would take over and we would go for a ride hedge hoping all over the surounding countryside. Boy, sure could he fly that J3.

There was a lady who kept a 172 at the field, here name was/is Roxanne Perona. Toward the end of my instructions Pete told me I should check out in the 172 because it was more appropriate for carrying passengers. It was a VERY windy day and my landings were rough to say the least. So Pete took it around with the intention of showing me how to do it. Well, he had as much trouble bringing it in smoothly as I did and after we were on the ground he taxied over to the office where Rozanne was standing. When he came out of the office he heard Rozanne say, "He isn't going to send you up by yourself is he?" and I told her that he had not said anything to me about going up by myself. Well, he must have heard what Roxanne said and as he was walking toward the plane he surprised Roxanne and I by saying to me, "Why don't you take it around the pattern by yourself a few times." Then he turned around and started heading back to the office and as he did he said to Roxanne, "You have to know when to get out of the airplane, Roxanne."

Pete was a hell of a pilot and a hell of a man. I had heard that he died sometime back - not sure when. I would love to go back up to Trinca and spend some time with him. I guess I should have gone sooner. Let me extend my best wishes to all of you who are "graduates" of Trica. It was a great place to fly. - Mel Ponton, Bloomsbury, NJ

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