Monday, December 11, 2006

ExcelAire pilots: Back on U.S. soil

They're home at last. The two American pilots who were involved in the mid-air collision between a corporate jet and a Brazilian airliner in late September are back on U.S. soil.

An article from Newsday, republished on the Airport Business website, quotes the two ExcelAire pilots:
"It feels good to be home," said Joseph Lepore about 5 p.m. yesterday, as he strode toward the Bay Shore ranch house where he lives with his wife, two children and parents.

Jan Paladino said, "It feels great," as he hauled a travel bag into his Westhampton Beach house. "I'm glad to be home."

"We're very excited," Paladino's wife, Melissa, said. "He's had a long ordeal. He's looking forward to getting some rest."
The article also features a nice photo of the two men on the airstairs of the Embraer Legacy 600 that brought them from Brazil back to Ronkonkoma, NY, the same aircraft type they were piloting at the time of the accident.

Among those waiting to greet the returning pilots was New York Times journalist Joe Sharkey, who was a passenger aboard the Legacy that collided with the airliner over Brazil. He's done a fine job using his blog to keep the focus on the plight of the pilots during the time that they were prevented from leaving Brazil.

Source: ExcelAire Pilots Detained in Brazil Return Home - Airport Business

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