THE SMELL OF C-54 ENGINES, RAIN AND SNOW
ALBERT LOWE

 
                         I served on the Berlin Airlift from December 1948 to September 1949
                         in Fassberg, Germany.  I flew  267 flights from Berlin to Tegal
                         Airbase in the French section. I was an Aircraft command and
                         Instruction pilot.  Our C-54's carried 10 tons of coal per flight
                         and our shifts were 12 hours long. 0600 to 1800 and 1800 to 0600.
                          This made for long days and nights. The weather was very rough December
                         through March.  Amazingly, I only had 3 missed approaches due to
                         weather.  And the weather was in my favor on Christmas Eve 1948
                         when a snowstorm closed down Tegal  Airforce base and allowed me to
                         spend Christmas in Berlin.
 
                            It is my opinion that we blazed  the trail in all weather be it
                         night or day. My memory will always  retain the sounds and sights of
                         rain, snow, C-54 engines, red  hot exhaust stacks and the labor
                         and strain of lifting heavy loads  into the air.
 
                         For those  of us who participated and still  survive,  we can hold
                         our heads  high and be extremely proud that  we were a part of the greatest
                         humantiarian undertaking the world  has ever known.
 
  Albert Lowe