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Why Shakylake?

Lake Central Airlines was known to many people as Shakylake in the mid-60's. By 1968, it proved true and the airline merged with Allegheny Airlines. It was the first merger for both airlines. I'm sure there were problems with the merger, but they were almost unnoticeable. For me, it was a good merger.

I hope to share with all who come here my own memories, recollections and stories as well as some of the same from my friends including photographs and documents over a near 36 year career and the years since my retirement.

We had a Union at Lake Central and I was a Union Steward. I got to meet the Presidents of Lake Central, then Allegheny and on through the years USAir and now US AIRWAYS.

There was always a grievance in the works for whatever reason at Lake Central and they almost never settled locally resulting in many trips to Indianapolis to attend System Board of Adjustments hearings on behalf of the local grievant. That was where I met Lloyd Hartman, President of Lake Central. I also met L. Thomas Ferguson. We all knew Tom Ferguson was a plant by Allegheny in advance of the merger, but the Company always denied it. Ed Colodny shared with me once that Ferguson was a plant, but that he really began to believe he could save Lake Central. He did try by changing our logo and repainting a few airplanes with a big red heart on the tail.

It was during this transition period (March 5th, 1967) that I lost my first friends in an airline accident. John Horn with Co-Pilot Roger Skillman and Stewardess Barbara Littman left Chicago to Lafayette, Indiana then Cincinnati on the way to Columbus and then Toledo with a final destination of Detroit. Everything was fine when LC 527 passed through my Cincinnati Station. That same evening, John Horn was having a little fun with me my calling "Marion, '27 In Range" (Marion, Indiana was a nearby station and he didn't use the full flight number so I didn't catch it) I was expecting his call as "Cincinnati, 527 is In Range". He told me when he taxied in that I should answer the radio when he called my name. We all had a good chuckle about it when the pilots came in to get paperwork for their next leg from me. It was one of my best memories, but the saddest day in my career to date. Read the Accident report here.

 

 

Enjoy your visit to shakylake.com. This is for you who lived it with me.