Richard Russell

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by cowman, Aug 12, 2018.

  1. cowman

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    There's a big thread on what he did and the aviation end of all of it already, I didn't want to detract from that conversation thus the new thread.

    So apparently, from what's known this guy decided to end his life which is sadly all too common but there's a twist here. He didn't go quietly with a whimper... and he didn't go out and murder a bunch of people he instead acted out a fantasy of his without hurting anyone else(the financial interests in the aircraft not withstanding).

    Obviously one doesn't want to condone suicide or theft and reckless operation of an aircraft but as suicides go it's not bad. Sure beats the heck of the ones that go murder a bunch of their coworkers or classmates that's for sure.

    Also I think it's a fantasy a lot of us have thought of... like if you were diagnosed with some terminal illness and only had weeks to live. Who hasn't thought of doing something epic that, normally, would get one fired/sued/jailed but since you're dying who cares about the consequences.

    Some of the radio calls the guy made too... like apologizing to all his loved ones. Really sounds like he had thought all this out and planned to have a golden moment before ending it all. I see folks in some circles speaking almost admiringly of the guy. IDK if I'd go that far but there's certainly some romanticism to it.
     
  2. tawood

    tawood Pattern Altitude

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    I don't know if I'd agree with it being "not bad". I don't just write off the financial interests, and he actually put many people at risk by overflying them, etc. Maybe its easy for me to put him in the major douche category, but isn't there a cliff around there he could have jumped off of?
     
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  3. Mike Smith

    Mike Smith Pattern Altitude

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    It’s quite possible that this schmucks actions will affect everyone who flys or works in aviation in the form of enhanced security theater. I have zero F’s to give this guy above what I give any troubled soul who commits suicide.
     
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  4. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I do feel sorry for him. I also think he wronged Horizon and Alaska Airlines, but I still feel sorry for him and like cowman in a very strange way I have an odd appreciation for how he did it. He wanted his moment to do something incredible and he clearly didn't want to hurt anyone else with it.

    As far as consequences for aviation this ought to be a non issue. You have a group of people who always think that the Sky is falling and that every little sneeze is indicative of a dire need for a thousand new regulations. I sincerely hope that this guy had a sense of serenity and was at peace when he ended it.
     
  5. Mike Smith

    Mike Smith Pattern Altitude

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    I think it is naive to think there will be no repercussions from this. This guy didn’t steal a Baron from a class D GA ramp. He stole a passenger carrying airplane off the ramp of a Bravo. There will be repercussions.
     
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  6. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    No doubt. But do there need to be? That's the question. I argue no.
     
  7. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    Yeah I don't want to elevate him to a hero or role model or anything. I just find the idea interesting. I think just about everyone has fantasized about throwing off the shackles of responsibility and doing something crazy like that before... and we certainly all enjoy all the stories from the rouge aviators of yesteryears breaking all sorts of rules that we'd be horrified about today. Maybe that's the point? That someone can still pull off such things in this day and age? IDK like I said I just find it interesting.

    And I'm sure there will be repercussions but is that on him or is it on the people making the rules? I tend to think it's on the people making the rules...
     
  8. Mike Smith

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    Oh, of course not. We agree on that. That’s why this guy is a moron because he is going to cause unnecessary problems for the rest of us.
     
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  9. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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  10. Mike Smith

    Mike Smith Pattern Altitude

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    100 percent on him. Don’t give them any ammunition they can’t make more rules.
     
  11. cowman

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    I really disagree with that. Why shouldn't the people making the rules have to take responsibility for those rules? Why do we give those in authority a pass, shouldn't it be the opposite? They don't HAVE to do anything.
     
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  12. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    If your kid has a drivers' license and they borrow your car and get a speeding ticket, is that really your fault?
     
  13. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    I look at this guy, he was given a job that requires a boatload of trust, working with aircraft that transport people. He totally violated that trust in probably the most selfish way possible to take himself out. I have no respect for him and quite frankly, he doesn't deserve the attention he is getting. His family is apparently shocked that he would do this. They, along with his employer, are victims of this guy's selfishness, or sickness. He had a totally lack of empathy for those who loved him or worked with him. F him. Thankfully no innocents were hurt.
     
  14. Mike Smith

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    If you’re gonna take that position, why shouldn’t the people who put others in positions of power be held accountable? We don’t HAVE to elect them. No, that guy is responsible.
     
  15. cowman

    cowman En-Route

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    We should. We should have the courage to say we understand it's not possible to make the world 100% secure and we accept that now and then it will mean something bad will happen and we're ok with that as long as it doesn't become an epidemic.

    That's a hard position to take, it goes against the grain of how we've become accustomed to thinking. There are no accidents, someone is always accountable, etc. Anytime something bad happens someone must be to blame, some liberty must be taken away, some procedure put in place. That's how it's been as long as I can remember. Does it have to be that way? Seems like we're so choked with security, accountability, and liability these days that it's getting harder and harder for ordinary people do great things.

    To take risks, to be able to work without constant scrutiny, and to not lop of someone's proverbial head over minor technicalities/rule violations has value in society too. Where to draw the line is always going to be a matter for debate but at some point we do have to ask just how far this philosophy of making everything secure and safe really can and should go. I feel very safe in most places in the country and most certainly at airports and commercial aircraft. I'm willing to say "this is good enough, no more rules please".
     
  16. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I think the same thing. We are padding away risk and the associated opportunities for greatness by aiming for secure mediocrity. I read the dumbest thing about commercial space flight a while back - that the government doesn't know that its legal because there are no regulations for it. It says right in the country's charter that anything not specifically governed is considered to be the right of the people. After the SpaceShipTwo crash some people said this is why we shouldn't allow people to test private spacecraft because one of those pilots died. He was both an astronaut and a test pilot! You think that he didn't know there was the possibility of his own demise?
     
  17. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach

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    I don’t find what he did as a fantasy I’ve ever thought about doing. If I want to be remembered for something after death, it’s how I lived my life and not how I ended it. If I had weeks to live I would spend it enjoying life. I wouldn’t take an aircraft and put others in danger with lack of experience in said aircraft to make a point. What if it crashed on take off into a populated area? What if part of the wing failed during his aerobatics and flew uncontrolled into a populated area?

    My brother committed suicide (CO poisoning). Although he didn’t take people with him and he didn’t destroy a multimillion dollar aircraft, suicide is always a bad way to go. It’s sad that there are those who can’t see the beauty in life because of an illness.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2018
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  18. hindsight2020

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    upload_2018-8-12_14-49-16.png
     
  19. Zeldman

    Zeldman Final Approach

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    I agree. This guy is somehow going to affect my lively hood. His "grand and glorious" stunt will make supporting my family a little more difficult.

    Now we are going to have to put up with the copycats that think stealing an airplane will mean getting their names in the news and possibly may get their face on Tv. I wonder if this guy even knew that he would die as he crashed the plane.?? Next the "chicken littles" will want to be heard claiming doom and gloom is in our future as more and more people will be doing the same thing, and start their chanting that "something be done"...

    I have no admirations or respect for this guy.
     
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  20. Paulie

    Paulie Line Up and Wait

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    It’s already old news will soon be forgotten, what repercussions you fearing? I doubt anything will come of it besides perhaps deeper background checks.
    There have been a few pilots that have gone nuts and taken people with them, what happened? Nothing. Stop living in fear.
     
  21. Mike Smith

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    This is one I really, really hope I am wrong and you and others here can call me chicken little. But to answer your question, I don’t know what repercussions I expect and have nothing more to go on than this feels like one that will get some traction because bubba public would have no problem with more security theatre. I don’t live in fear Paulie.
     
  22. Paulie

    Paulie Line Up and Wait

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    Apparently you are, you posted your worries.
     
  23. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    As far as the security theater goes...

    The prisoners are upset somebody made a jail break and killed themselves, because the guards will beat everyone now.

    The guards the airlines asked for, instead of dealing with their own business security responsibilities themselves.

    The choice to create a massive government “security” agency has consequences. Go figure.

    As far as the guy goes, I don’t mind if people decide to check out. The airplane is a bit much, but I doubt Horizon will suffer much for the loss if they were properly insured. Hell of a lot cheaper than losing one with people aboard, and I’m sure the execs had a written plan for that.

    When the security theater gets ridiculous enough, people will vote to de-fund it. So the dumber the new rules, and more obnoxious, the better. Make it hurt, masses of jilted government security experts!

    Think the airlines could wrestle back their original business responsibility from a massive newly created government agency? You decide.

    But I bet they’re going to want to, after this. A lesson in taking the “free” money option and socializing “security”.

    This particular event is pretty easy...

    Go back to nose-gear like the 727. Take the pin out, you can’t steer. Someone would have to make one and put it in, to even get the thing to be steerable. Lock up the pins.

    I’m sure other aircraft will be equally “sabotageable” by the airlines. Pull something and they’re not going anywhere until two people check that something out of the locker and take it to the aircraft.

    Can’t steal an aircraft that won’t start, won’t taxi, or won’t fly. Not that difficult to disable most types.

    Boeing’s solution will be a pin. Airbus will add biometric logins with fingerprint readers and iris scans to their engine start routines.

    “Start the engines, Hal.”

    “I can’t do that, Dave...”

    Hahaha. :)
     
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  24. LoLPilot

    LoLPilot Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Well to be fair I think his worries have been mirrored by everyone here for the most part.
     
  25. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Airlines shouldn’t have made the deal with the devil and handed over security responsibility to the public. They should have fought that really hard. Their business. Not the public’s.

    They didn’t and now get to enjoy what they put their customers through. Not sure this should be all that much of a surprise to them.

    How long did they think they could keep the $17/hr Blueberries on the other side of the ramp door once the politicians realized it was a jobs program and hired piles of security consultants, and then didn’t secure the ramp side of things? Or even think it wouldn’t be an event like this one that would trigger them coming outside?

    Did they even bother to station their own employees to watch that TSA staff didn’t STEAL stuff out of their own customer’s luggage? Complain about it heavily in public? Tell the idiots to quit making people throw out $3 bottles of water to get to their aircraft? Not a single move by an airline to say they want recorded cameras on the security rooms that THEY can see to protect their customers?

    Just ignore everything prior to the checkpoint in the “customer experience” and trust underpaid government uniformed non-deputized fake law enforcement control access to the front door of their business?

    Very very bad business move. Extremely bad.

    Now the bureaucrats will want to control the airline’s employee access to their aircraft. Those on the other side of the ramp door who’ve been harassed by TSA for almost two decades will just say, “Duh!” and not feel too bad about it. “Take off those shoes, baby! Enjoy that pat down!”

    There were enough smart people at airlines who could have predicted this whole thing if they’d have just stopped to think about it.

    Leaving security to bureaucrats was always going to backfire on them and their employees sooner or later. Should have fought it. Wouldn’t have been popular, but it would have been the right thing to do. If they didn’t win, they should have demanded their own employees would oversee the bureaucrats’ treatment of their customers walking in their front door.

    At least play some decent music in the cattle pen security lines and have some CSRs there to help anyone who needs ANY kind of help.

    Maybe SWA could have some toilet paper races down the security aisles? LOL. :)
     
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  26. Anymouse

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    Although it won't be significant, it will result in a trickle down effect to us consumers. I'm sure Horizon had the aircraft insured. So, the insurance company will need to pay out a bunch of money for it. That will result in their customers getting a bit of a rate increase, whether it's said to be a result of the loss or not.

    Also, Horizon is now short one aircraft. I don't know just how deep their inventory goes, but their schedule may be affected, which will cost them some money, which will be passed on to their passengers.

    Bottom line, this stupid act will affect a lot of people in some way.
     
  27. Anymouse

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    There were a few people (admittedly not certificated pilots, similar to the subject of this thread) that went nuts with some planes a while back and took people with them. It resulted in a war that's still going on. Don't get me started about all the dumb assed regulations that resulted. Folks are STILL living in fear over that little incident.
     
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  28. Anymouse

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  29. Shepherd

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    If I was told I only had a few weeks to live, I'd seriously consider doing a RichardRussell. (<--- see what I did there?)
    I even know the plane I would steal. Trust me, the guy who owns it deserves whatever bad things happen to him.
    Then I would just fly off into the sunrise.
     
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  30. Anymouse

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    So, is this now the new version of a Rick Roll?
     
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  31. G-Man

    G-Man Line Up and Wait

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    Brilliant, Anymouse!!!
     
  32. Paulie

    Paulie Line Up and Wait

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    I was speaking of the German fellow. See, you already forgot that one and it happened less than two years ago.
    I wouldn’t ever speak lightly of the AA tragedy, I knew people on the one that hit the WTC.
     
  33. CC268

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  34. paflyer

    paflyer Final Approach

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    Holy Hell, that is fantastic. But makes me sad that he's not around to see that he's become an outlaw folk hero and internet meme.
     
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  35. Shepherd

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    O. M. G.
     
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  36. Ryanb

    Ryanb Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Not sure if these have been shared on here or not. So here’s the ATC audio from this whole thing.



     
  37. CC268

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    Watching his YouTube channel he seemed like a nice guy. Sad...

    RIP #SkyKing
     
  38. Ryanb

    Ryanb Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Atleast he knew how to get sendy. More than I can say for most people. He was probably a fun guy to hang out with!

    :D :p
     
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  39. wilkersk

    wilkersk Cleared for Takeoff

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  40. Rushie

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    I can't find his YouTube channel. Have they taken it down, or is it just that my googling is only bringing up all the reposts and news reports?