Flying "Anything, Anywhere, Anytime"

Sightseeing for Sightless

Children were always close to the hearts of the people of Transocean as nearly everyone in the company had young families of their own. Because of the sensitivity and generosity of Nelson and airline employees, 82 blind or visually impaired children once realized the dream of a lifetime when Transocean hosted several flights for the children over the San Francisco Bay Area.


None of the children, all between 7 and 14 years of' age, had ever been near an airplane before. Nelson and other flight personnel briefed them on all the procedures, from fastening safety belts to pre-flighting the plane, the engine warm-up, to the let-down for the landing. Even the scenery was described in detail. Before the flights were over, the children could call out changes in direction at the slightest movement of the plane. Back at the gate, each child was taken into the cockpit to sit in the seats and touch the controls. Not all of' Transocean's flying was done for profit.

Bill Glenn, from TAL's maintenance hanger in Oakland California, escorts school children around the hanger area, 1958.  Photo:  Ralph Lewis

*From Folded Wings, A History of Transocean Air Lines by Arue Szura