60 Years of Sophisticated Aviation Experience
The author and activist against corruption in government, Rodney Stich, has an unusual background for exposing corruption in the various government entities that adversely affects the security of the United States and the lives of the men, women and children in America. this information and documentation is of immense value to any group concerned about the spreading cancerous corruption by people in key government positions, including the courts.
Naval Aviator Patrol Plane Commander
At the age of 17, he joined the U.S. Navy in December 1940 (a year prior to the Japanese attack upon Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. He was trained and then served as a radioman on PBY seaplanes until the end of 1942. His PBY squadrons were VP-71 and VP-54, and patrolled out of Hawaii and Wake Island.
In early 1943, he was selected for Navy pilot training, first going the to University of Georgia at Athens, and then to the Dallas Naval Air Station for primary training in the Steerman "yellow perils," flying out of a Navy field at Grand Prairie, Texas.
Upon finishing primary training, he then went to Pensacola, and when asked what type of aircraft he would prefer to train and fly, he selected the PBY Catalina flying boats that he had served in as a radioman.
He received his Navy wings in December 1941 at Pensacola Naval Air Station. He was then transferred to the Naval Air Station at Jacksonville, Florida for advance training in the PBY.
Flight Instructor in Advance PBY Flying
Upon completion of that training, he was selected to remain at the station as a pilot flight instructor in the PBY aircraft.
Upon receiving sufficient experience as an instructor, he was assigned to training as a Patrol Plane Commander in the Navy Liberator and Privateer aircraft at the Naval Air Station, Hutchinson, Kansas.
After finishing his training and being designated a Patrol Plane Commander (PPC), a crew was assigned to him and he was transferred to Patrol Bombing Squadron 120 at Whidbey Island, Washington.
After a period he was transferred to San Diego and then to Tinian. Some months after World War II was over, he received an honorable discharge.
It is believed that he was the youngest Patrol Plane Commander in four engine aircraft during World War II. Former president George Bush, Sr. claimed he was the youngest Navy pilot in World War II. That may be, but Stich was the youngest Patrol Plane Commander, a title that is not acquired until several years of flying experience.
Stich flew in the Pacific where a few years earlier Amelia Earhart lost her life. the primitive navigation aids on the ground and in the aircraft, and the ease in getting lost, makes it obvious that Amelia Earhart missed the tiny island destination and ran out of fuel. Stich was flying patrols out of Midway Island before the great battle of Midway, missing the battle by being sent to the United States for Navy pilot training.
International Airline Captain
After the war, he became an airline pilot, and flew for several airlines, the changes due to the frequent furloughs of pilots during slow periods. Among the airlines for which he flew were:
- Pioneer Airlines, Dallas, flying DC-3 aircraft, until he left in the early part of 1951 to seek a pilot's position in California.
- In July 1951, he was hired by Transocean Airlines, an airline that the Saturday Evening Post wrote a three-series article called, "he Daring Young Men of Transocean Airlines."
- Because of Transocean's international operations, the flight operations covered many unusual incidents and type of operations. For instance, he flew several DC-4 trips from Oakland to New Delhi, India, carrying 1600 monkeys for delivery to the Midwest where they were used for the Salk polio vaccine program. He flew Moslem pilgrims to Mecca from various Middle East locations (Beirut, Jerusalem, Baghdad, Teheran, Abadan, sometimes landing in the desert outside of Mecca.
During one such operation in 1953, while residing at a hotel in Abadan, Iran, he was caught up in the CIA-initiated revolution that toppled Mossadegh and brought into power the Shah. The Iranians has previously ordered the departure of British and Americans, and Stich and his small group of airmen were only tolerated because they were flying Moslems to Mecca. When the revolution occurred, Stich and his small group were at great physical risk. With the help of a Dutch national responsible for security, this small group had a machine-gun escort to their aircraft for an immediate departure.
- During his flying days for the airlines, Stich was captain on virtually every type of piston aircraft flown by the airlines since the end of World War II. These included, for instance, DC-3, DC-4, C-46, Martin 202, Convair 340, Lockheed Constellation, and Boeing Stratocruiser.
- During a two year period during the busy summer months, he flew as captain for Japan Airlines, where his copilots were former Japanese military pilots with whom the U.S. Navy did combat. His Japanese pilot license is the low number 170, one of the first pilots licensed by Japan.
- Among the airlines for which he flew during furloughs included Seaboard & Western (Seaboard & World); Cal Eastern; Cal Central; and several small charter airlines flying gamblers from San Francisco to Reno.
- All types of emergency situations were part of these activities, including for instance: engine fires and engine failures in flight and during takeoff; shutdown of all destination and alternate airports by fog on the North Atlantic run; un-forecast high winds on long over-water flights that made reaching an airport questionable.
- Stich has a book that describes his life and the perils he encountered.
Joining the Federal Aviation Administration
In 1962, when his primary airline, Transocean Airlines, declared bankruptcy, Stich sent a letter to the FAA inquiring about a position as inspector on the airlines; he was promptly contacted, hired, and assigned to the Los Angeles office. His duties included anything involved operational safety. He conducted flight checks of airline pilots, issued aircraft ratings to airline pilots, made safety recommendations, inspecting and insuring that airlines meet federal air safety requirements, investigating aircraft incidents and accidents and making reports on them. Airlines at which Stich conducted pilot and flight engineer checks included United, TWA, Eastern, Northwest, among others.
Made several safety procedures while an FAA inspector that are standard today at many airlines. These include high altitude jet upset avoidance procedures, procedures to avoid inadvertent descent into the ground, procedure to minimize the large altitude loss following stall of air carrier aircraft, pre-takeoff briefing procedures.
After about one year, he was approached and asked to take an assignment to correct the conditions responsible for the worst series of airline crashes in the nations' history, and primarily the serious problems at United Airlines training and competency-check center at Denver. At that time United Airlines had experienced more airline disasters than all the other airlines combined.
Discovering Serious Safety Problems and Corruption
Related to Continuing Series of Airline Disasters
Stich discovered the most serious safety problems and criminal acts that he had ever seen in his flying career. Key people at the United Airlines Flight Standards office in Denver were denying to pilots and flight engineers the legally required training and then falsifying government required reports that falsely stated the training and competency checks had been completed. These were the cause of the many airline disasters that the airline was experiencing.
Stich discovered, as many federal inspectors discovered and experienced earlier, that FAA management:
- Knew of the crash-related pattern of air safety and criminal acts by key management personnel at United Airlines.
- Instructed inspectors not to file reports of air safety or criminal violations that were discovered at United Airlines. This and similar misconduct made possible most of the many crashes experienced by United Airlines over a 20 year period.
- Removed from the official government records and returned official reports of these problems to the reporting inspectors, telling that that these reports were not wanted, and that they would make the office look bad when there was an accident investigation.
- Destroyed inspectors' reports that revealed the serious violations at United Airlines.
- Harassed and threatened federal inspectors who continued to report the accident-causing air safety and criminal violations.
- Took retaliatory actions against federal inspectors who took required corrective actions, such as conducting a record inspection opposed by United management personnel, reporting a crew members needing corrective training for such problems as high-sink-rate approaches, poor knowledge of the aircraft, poor pilot performance.
These were not academic problems; people were dying horrible deaths in crashes caused by the problems that we knew existed, and that were being blocked from being corrected by the culture or arrogance and corruption within certain segments of the FAA.
FAA management was complicit in the criminal acts, and repeatedly blocked Stich and other competent inspectors from either reporting the problems or acting upon them. FAA management officials in the Los Angeles division office were also complicit, and refused to act when Stich brought the matters to their attention.
The gravity of the continuing crashes and deaths, and the culture within the FAA that covered up for the problems, caused Stich to exercise the law in such a manner that he acted as an independent prosecutor. He conducted hearings over a four month period, subpoenaing FAA officials, and providing evidence that the corruption existed and that the corruption was closely related to the airline disasters occurring at United Airlines. Some of these problems were system wide in the FAA, and responsible for fatal crashes at other airlines.
Instead of a judge presiding over the hearings as in a federal or state court, a lawyer from the FAA administrator's office acted as the hearing officer. Stich submitted a closing brief, which was following by the hearing officer covering up.
During the hearings, three more airline disasters occurred, one of them being a United Airlines crash at Salt Lake City where 43 people were cremated alive. The direct causes of the crash and deaths, as stated by the NTSB report, were (a) the captain's dangerous high sink rate; (b) the flight engineer's poor knowledge; and (c) the crew's poor evacuation of the passengers.
The political NTSB board, however, omitted from the report the most important problem, being the internal FAA problems and the problems at United Airlines.
After the hearing, the FAA retaliated against Stich, and he was forced to leave government service, writing that he refused to work under such corrupt conditions.
While he was an FAA air safety inspector, among his many reports and recommendations, he reported the dangers of hijackings and the two common-sense steps that would have prevented almost every hijacking that subsequently occurred, including the hijackings of September 11, 2001. The deep-seated culture within the FAA, including malfeasance, misfeasance and nonfeasance, resulted in the repeated disregard of the reports and recommendations of the highly qualified FAA air safety inspectors. As detailed in the third edition of Unfriendly Skies, this conduct caused or made possible the September 11, 2001, hijackings, earlier fatal hijackings, and many other fatal air disasters. A prior airline crash into New York City that generated worldwide attention, a United Airlines crash, arose from this culture of FAA misconduct.
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Hired by Flying Tigers
After leaving the FAA, Flying Tigers hired Stich to prepare the flight operatingprocedures and pilot operating manual for the stretched DC-8s that the airline had on order. Stich used this occasion to introduce a number of his prior safety recommendations, which were adopted by the airline. After approximately two years, completing the manual and the arrival of the first DC-8, Stich's employment was terminated.
During this period, Stich has invested in real estate, buying distressed properties and improving them. He had acquired about $10 million in real estate by 1986, starting with a $400 investment in a house in Hayward, California.
Motivating Stich to Again Act
The internal FAA problems bred a continuing series of airline disasters, which continued after Stich left the FAA. Seeking to help correct the situation, Stich filed lawsuits in the federal courts against the FAA and NTSB. These were blocked by motion of Department of Justice lawyers, who had been covering up since Stich informed FBI and DOJ personnel of the problems while Stich was a federal agent.
Circumventing Cover-Ups With a
Book and Radio-TV Appearances
In possession of such important information that could be used to take corrective actions to halt many of the easily preventable airline disasters, Stich authored and published the first of several books, the first being released in 1978, the first edition of Unfriendly Skies. that book is now in the fourth edition and called, Unfriendly Skies: 20th and 21st Centuries.
With the release of the first book, Stich started appearing as guest and expert on radio and television shows in the United States, Canada, Germany, Holland, and Mexico. Today, the list is over 3,000 appearances.
Television series were twice considered for his books. The first occasion was when producer Jackie Cooper planned a three-part television series following release of the first edition of Unfriendly Skies and the last occasion was in 1999 when Defrauding America was considered for a continuing television series.
Publicity Caused Other Government Agents to
Contact Stich With Information on Corruption
A few years after Stich started appearing as guest on radio and television shows, other former or present government agents started contacting Stich with information on corruption in other government operations. These sources include present and former agents of the FBI, DEA, Customs, CIA, including former heads of secret CIA airlines and secret CIA financial operations, who were part of covert activities in which corrupt and criminal activities were occurring.
Stich in his Beech Twin Bonanza (D50E) aircraft before government personnel (Justice Department and federal judges as described in Unfriendly Skies and Defrauding America) seized his business properties, his home, his planes and his assets. These corrupt activities were assisted by corrupt CIA-FBI proprietary law firms and fronts.
The author's plane (Beech D-50E Twin Bonanza), before federal judges took his plane, his home, his businesses, his properties, his assets, his sole source of income, in a bizarre scheme to silence his exposure activities. For details concerning this taking and how it involves federal judges and Justice Department lawyers blocking the exposure of widespread corruption in the courts and other government operations. The sequence of the tactics were described in a lawsuit he filed in the federal courts at Reno, Nevada. (MS Word) (Adobe PDF)
Throughout a great part of the traumatic attacks upon Stich, he had one very loyal companion, his only loyal companion. He was also physical protection when several of Stich's sources of information were killed or found dead under mysterious circumstances. That companion was Midas, his German Shepherd.
After over ten years of companionship, which provided considerable support to Stich during great personal and financial losses, Midas passed away on April 3, 1997. Unless one had that kind of relationship with a near-human-like four-legged creature, during such difficult times, that bond may be difficult to understand. At Midas' death, grief-stricken Stich wrote a short memorial for Midas:
Good bye, old pal, you've been my closest and most faithful companion for the past ten years, sticking with me through very difficult times. I will always remember my German Shepherd, Midas. Your loving friend, Rodney.
Nearing the end of his life, he continues the fight against the arrogance and corruption in government, and the legal attacks from the legal fraternity that continues its efforts to silence him. He faces an uglier enemy than any he faced in World War II. More information on these legal attacks and the termination of all legal rights and protections can be found at one of the many legal pages on this Internet site. The judicial attacks upon him, to silence his reporting of corruption in government, can be found in the various books and material on this and related web sites.
For more aviation pictures, from World War II, to pleasure flights through the Grand Canyon, click on the Transocean Airlines site.
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