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Old June 23rd 18, 08:41 PM posted to rec.aviation.misc
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Default Anyone know what happened to Sky Life Flying Camp?

I can barely believe I've stumbled on this thread of 16 years! I only googled "Sky-Life Flying Camp" because I had a dream last night in which I was flying with Lee....

I started flying with Sky-Life and HPN when I was 13, and soloed on my 16th birthday in 1973. I also flew at the Camp, and worked a couple summers teaching photography (there was that small darkroom there). I eventually went on to get my CFII, had some wonderful years of working as a physician while teaching flying a couple evenings/ week. I sadly gave up flying perhaps 10+ years ago, after recurrent kidney stones, as well as just feeling I couldn't do it enough to feel safe.... I do feel that aviation "safety" was a strong part of the culture overall for Sky- Life. I saw that amazing ad from Flying Magazine (I'm the kid in the front right!).

This thread is so sad.... I had some suspicions over the years that Lee might be abusing kids, but this is the first time I've seen it confirmed. Obviously, I was lucky enough not to have suffered from what he did, but am so sorry to hear about those who did. I remember very well going through that initiation, naked, blindfolded, scared.... but then we just got dressed, without anything further happening. I then went through that welcoming ritual at night... I still remember it so well, as eventually, I was asked to participate in the speech ("You are about to become a part of aviation history........"). In retrospect, I'm sorry I was so naive as to not realize more was going on, but as others have said, it was a different time.

I have many fond memories of flying on that grass strip, getting drunk for the first time (cold duck), Lee's piano playing, and some great guys. I also knew Bud (in fact, he was the physics teacher at my high school). I don't know what became of Bud... but some years ago, I did spend some time with Jay Treat (I was living in Ohio)- in fact, he let me fly a commercial simulator where he was working at Flight Safety. I went with Jay to see Lee on his death bed (intubated, not able to communicate).

Enough for now.... wow.