The voice we’re missing here – that of Bill Gabbert – is here in the archive of Bill’s articles. Join us as we begin the new year with a return to a few of the most-viewed posts from 2022.
Of those in the top 10 from last year’s FireAviation.com archives, one stands out, demonstrating Bill’s key ability to listen, reflect and make context from the work of those in the field. This was published January 14, 2022, but recounted fire events from September 2021.
The headline: “Air tanker pilot dropped retardant on his own neighborhood.”
And it begins …
In lining up the DC-7 air tanker for his first retardant drop on the Almeda Drive Fire southeast of Medford, Oregon on September 8, 2020, Pilot Scot Douglas looked out of the window of Tanker 60 and saw his wife and daughter hosing down their yard. The fire was spreading north toward his neighborhood pushed by 40 to 45 mph winds out of the southeast. The wind aligned with the Interstate 5 corridor as it burned through communities like a blowtorch for 8 miles, starting north of Ashland and tearing through the cities of Talent and Phoenix.
For the rest of the article, visit https://fireaviation.com/2022/01/14/air-tanker-pilot-dropped-retardant-on-his-own-neighborhood/.
Needless to say, it became a tragic day — as we witness too often when fire burns into communities — but as you read (or re-read) this post we celebrate (again) some good news for the pilot’s family and home.