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06-18-2009, 02:39 PM #11
Great read. I like his style. Wouldn't want him after me!
06-18-2009, 08:56 PM #12
wow an awesome and exciting story to be read. My kind of guy. There should be a movie on his story.
06-18-2009, 09:08 PM #13
i was gonna ask for cliff notes, but after reading all the positive comments looks like i'll have to read it. lol.
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06-18-2009, 09:19 PM #14
06-18-2009, 09:29 PM #15
wow... this is hollywood material.
06-19-2009, 12:24 AM #16
06-19-2009, 12:32 AM #17
Cliff Notes...."I landed in Paris and contacted Arpels to see if we could work something out," says Popovich. "Arpels tells me, 'I'm Francois Arpels and this is Paris. You will never find the planes.' I looked him right in the eye and told him, 'Frankie, they are all but gone. Trust me.' He hated the fact that I called him Frankie. That really got under his skin."
Using his European scouts, Popovich tracked one plane in Milan; the other was sitting on the tarmac near Terminal One at Charles DeGaulle Airport. The MD-81 was covered in official-looking documentation written in French, so Popovich just ripped everything off and hopped in. Big mistake. The airport cops stopped him as he was taxiing and threw him in a cell overnight. The next day, a French magistrate had handcuffs slapped on Popovich and ordered him returned to Chicago. "I was more determined than ever to grab those damn planes," he says. "You push me, I push back harder."
A few weeks later he snuck back into the country, convinced a captain with an Air Afrique fuel bus to fill up Arpel's Boeing and flew it out. But the Milan plane was trickier. The engine was behaving erratically, and no sane person should fly a bird with a hinky engine. Popovich had a replacement engine in Munich (engine-swapping is a common occurrence in the business) and the only way to get it would be to make the 50 minute flight and pray.
As his pilot Ed Dearborn climbed to altitude, Popovich remembers sitting in the back, furtively stealing looks at that shaky equipment. "The whole time I sat there thinking, 'If that engine lets go, I'm fucked.'" When they got to Germany and opened it up, the mechanics estimated that another couple of hours of airtime and the thing would have melted down. Along with Nick and his guys.
06-19-2009, 03:33 AM #18
Dayumm!EARNED, AND NOT GIVEN....
06-19-2009, 03:50 AM #19
06-19-2009, 04:00 AM #20
thats sick.-Riley Wysocki