#104 - Aloha Flight 234

Posted on Thursday, November 18th, 2021 at 12:25 pm by LaLonde Jewelers

During 1980s I always flew a lot. What you would call a frequent flyer. When you live on an Island you must fly to get anyplace.

I quickly learned ins and outs of flying. For instance, always try to keep your valuables on your body. If it is more than you can carry, then make sure it is in a small enough that it will fit under the seat in front of you and you can put your feet on it in case you fall asleep. Always put overhead luggage in upper bends that are located on your way out of the plane.

In the spring of 1988, an amazing thing happened over the skies of the Hawaiian Islands an Aloha Jet lost part t it’s top canopy and continue to fly to its destination. It was somewhat of a miracle. Thing is everything was not a miracle.

First of all, part of the top section became unhinged and blew off. The plane had a portion missing and open to the air. One flight attendant CB Lansing was sucked out of the plane never to be seen again. I had met this woman and it was devastating.

Thing is there was another gentleman on the flight who I knew, he was a diamond dealer that had an office in my building. Some how in all the chaos he had lost his packet of diamonds he was carrying. Turned out that he was sitting right next to the flight attendant that was sucked out.

Diamond dealers are aware of pitfalls to traveling and take precautions. This is just proof of how hectic a situation can get and how hard it can be to keep track of your belongings.

After this traumatic experience this diamond dealer didn’t work for several months. Then the word was out that he was back working. I had to stop and see him and I wondered what I would say to him after his ordeal. I walked into his office and he had a deep tan that he acquired from hanging around the pool during his time off.

So, the first thing that came to my mind was to say, nice tan what have you been doing flying around with the top off the plane.

I hope he can laugh about it now but he sure didn’t think it was funny then.

Written by Dan LaLonde, G.G., G.I.A.
Lalonde Jewelers & Gemologists
The Gem Expert