Piedmont Aviation Employee Newsletter /
June 1, 1982, edition 1 /
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volume 33, number 3
News about Piedmont. The Up-And-Coming Airline.
Piedmont's early birds
Flying Dayton to Dallas
Piedmont’s first flight to Dayton
arrived promptly, 20 days ahead of
It wasn't an attempt to break the
record for the earliest arrival of a
scheduled inaugural. Rather it was
the result of many departments
working at full speed to take advan
tage of a rare opportunity that
might otherwise have been lost.
Here’s how it all happened.
Piedmont’s earliest plans for
Dayton had included 20 daily de
partures. It is now history that,
because of air control capacity
limitations, these plans were
scaled down to a more modest
"We were disappointed," Presi
dent Bill Howard said, “because we
felt the 20 flights were an ideal level
for a startup of a new hub. Most of
that disappointment centered
around the loss of our ability to
lly between Dayton and Dallas/
Dallas/Fort Worth is among the
world’s busiest gateways and is the
most important gateway for air
traffic to much of the nation’s Sun
belt and rapidly growing Southwest.
slots open at DFW
But two things happened near
the end of May: First, the only air
line flying between Dayton and Dal
las nonstop announced plans to
suspend all its Dayton services.
Second, Braniff Airlines ceased op
erations, leaving an enormous void
of slots to fill at Dallas.
That made it easy. Right?
Aviation and business communi
ty leaders petitioned Piedmont to
do everything possible to replace
this important lost service. At
Piedmont, a decision was made
that this had to be a first priority,
not just for the Dayton/Dallas
market, but the beyond traffic Dal
las would represent for us at Akron/
Canton, Ft. Wayne, Lansing, and
Toledo when the full hub opened
The Federal Aviation Administra
tion held a lottery for some of Bra-
niffs slots. The luck of the draw, for
Piedmont, was all bad. The slots we
wanted were gone halfway down
the list before Piedmont’s choices
were even reached.
When it comes to ambitious un
dertakings, such as Piedmont’s
establishment of a new hub at Day
ton, there are many moments when
it is easier to give up than to go on.
This is one. But no one at Piedmont
Two other slots we had acquired
were traded to another airline.
Those slots, in turn, were traded to
a second airline which had some
thing to offer at Dallas. But a third
trade was required to get the exact
slots we needed.
Ron Rush was already on the
scene as Piedmont’s new station
manager at Dayton. Bruce Parrish,
director-station facilities, was there
speeding up everything in the con
struction project to meet a poten
tial earlier startup date.
Maintenance was alerted to ad
just its schedules. Flight Operations
and In-Flight Services began
rounding up crews for the two daily
round-trip services expected. T&riffs
Passenger Paul Reed receives his ticket from agents Chris McKinney (left) and Carl Witmore
for Piedmont's first flight from Dayton to Dallas/Fort Worth on June 11.
were quickly calculated. Equipment
was rushed to Dayton.
Then, on Wednesday, June 9,
permission was received from the
Federal Aviation Administration. A
press conference was called in Day
ton, and the travel world there told
the story: In less than 48 hours.
Piedmont would begin nonstop
service between Dayton and Dallas.
final touches added
The Cityof Dayton Aviation De
partment was fully cooperative.
Final touches were put on the
Piedmont ticket counter the night
of June 8. A temporary gate, to serve
Piedmont passengers on June 11
was pressed into service with tem
porary signage erected.
"The City of Dayton did a tre-
memdous job for us,” Parrish said.
“Just 100 days earlier, our ticket
counter area had been out-of-doors.
Grass was growing there. Now it’s
the most attractive counter in the
ticketing lobby area.”
July 1 will be a different story.
More departments, more people,
more cities will be involved when
Piedmont’s full hub goes into oper
ation. It has grown to 16 daily de
partures, with the addition of
Dallas flights and additional sche
dules to Akron/Canton and Toledo.
But it will be a different sense of
Piedmont accomplishment from
that Piedmont people had when the
first Dallas flight departed from
"We certainly had Incentive work
ing for us,” Howard said. “The rules
of the game were that those two
Dallas slots had to be in use by
June 11, or, according to the rules
of the lottery, they were lost to us.”
After the flight was airborne.
Piedmont was told it had several
extra days’ grace. But, what matter
Piedmont didn’t really need the
Related story page 3.
And they're off? CLT
Agent Dave Smith (far
right) won the 400 Meter
Race at the Carelines
Games June 5. Bill Gen
try. RDU agent, (second
from right) received the
silver medal and Miami
Agent Mark Pusey (fourth
from left), the bronze. For
more winners, turn to
Piedmont Aviation Employee Newsletter
groups preceding, succeeding, and alternate titles together.
June 1, 1982, edition 1
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