Chapter 26

Air California operated from Orange County Airport - the premier noise sensitive airport in the country. They were operating Boeing 737-200 aircraft who had a noise level that was disturbing to the neighbors, which happen to have one of the highest per capita incomes in the U.S.

Bob Clifford, yes, Bob Clifford from Lake Central Airlines in 1965, was now President of Air California in 1978. We had discussions regarding the MD-80. It met the size requirements for Air Cal growth plus it provided reduced noise levels compared to the 737-200. However, these were not the levels he would have acheived if the aircraft were powered by the G.E. engine. We provided Bob with the noise levels of the MD-80 aircraft from Orange County Airport, with takeoff procedures to assist in noise level reductions.

With approvals from the Orange County Aviation group, Bob placed an order for the MD-80. This was when things began to change. As we were negotiating the purchase agreement, Kim had another Salesman join us, Ron Wasikowski, who began to take over the responsibility for the carrier soon after the sale was concluded.

Bob Clifford would ask me, when we met later at a golf tournament, where I had disappeared to. "You sold us the aircraft then you disappear." I told Bob, that "his guess was good as mine. One moment I am selling you airplanes, the next Ron is taking credit." Kim was beginning to make his move on my position. It did not set well, but he had the politics on his side.