About Me

Marion Charles Pyles is my birth name but thanks to TV show Gomer Pyle USMC which aired from 1964-1969 coming along, I was known as 'Gomer'. These days I go my my middle name which is Charlie.

I have liked airplanes since the day I first saw one in the sky over my hometown of Elkins, West Virginia. My parents were involved with Ground Observer Corps and the Civil Air Patrol. Books from these two organizations fueled my interest in aviation, particularly the books that enabled me to identify airplanes by the silhouette in the sky. My parents bought an Encyclopedia when I was born in 1944. The original volumes were in alphabetical order. Each year we got 4 quarterly issues and a cover with the year on it's spine. Each quarterly issue had an aviation section and a disaster section. I read these two sections every time we got an issue starting probably around age 4.

My friends thought I was lying when I identified things such as the huge Convair B-36 Peacemakers flying over the Tygart Valley enroute to Langley AFB in Virginia not far away. These behemoths literally jarred the figurines off my mother's shelves and broke them. I can remember the first sonic booms made by fighter jets criss-crossing the skies overhead.

During my days in Junior High and High School in Elkins, my eyes and heart were continually on the sky. I took a correspondence course during my High School years with National School of Aeronautics. I planned to attend Business School, but scratched that because my resident training in Kansas City with NSA.

I met some interesting people at NSA and I still remember a few of them. I always figured I would go back, finish business school and then seek a job in the airline industry. As fate would have it, I got lucky. My hometown airline which was at the time Lake Central Airlines invited me for an interview in Pittsburgh. Palmer Holliday hired me and teh rest is this story. I hope you enjoy my musings. I was called for an interview with Lake Central Airlines at Pittsburgh almost as sooon as I arrived back in Elkins. This was early September 1963.

I always figured I would go back, finish business school and then seek a job in the airline industry. As fate would have it, I got lucky. My hometown airline which was at the time Lake Central Airlines invited me for an interview in Pittsburgh. I was hired and started working for Lake Central Airlines at Portsmouth, Ohio on September 10th, 1963. I never looked back. I'll never forget the friendship I had with Palmer Holiday who hired me. I'll never forget the friendship I had with Palmer Holiday who hired me. We were friends until Palmer passed away. The rest is this story. I hope you enjoy my musings.

-Charlie Pyles-