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Sun, Jan 10, 2010

89-Year-Old Turns To Wing Walking

Crossed The English Channel On Top Of A Bi-Plane Wing

Following the death of his wife in 2000, Tom Lackey, now 89 years old and  a retired builder in England, looked for ways to deal with his grief. He found one in wing walking.

Team Guinot Wing Walker

According to the New York Times, the pensioner has made 20 wing walks, the latest a trip across the English Channel atop the wing of a biplane. “My family thinks I’m mad,” Mr. Lackey said in a telephone interview with the paper. “I probably am.”

A friend of Lackey's from church said she originally thought he had a death wish after he lost his wife, but Sue Pitham said she finally realized he was an "adrenaline junkie."  Lackey suffered a stroke 6 years ago, but that only slowed him down. Pitham said he now just needs a bit more help getting out of the cockpit and up onto the wing of the plane.

Lackey said he plans a second wing-walk across the channel to celebrate his 90th birthday in May. If successful he'll the first person to ever wing-walk both directions across the channel.

FMI: www.centennialofflight.gov/essay/Explorers_Record_Setters_and_Daredevils/wingwalkers/EX13.htm

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