Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.

25 years ago

July 9, 1988

CHENANGO BRIDGE (AP) — Don Godfrey and his colleagues may not be able to fit into their vintage World War II-era planes, but they still call themselves pilots.

And why not?

Although their aircraft are known as giant-scale models, they’re much closer to the real thing than to the plastic, glue-together copies found in toy departments.

“When you see one of these beauties peel around and come bearing down, and you hear the engine rumble, it’s awesome, it’s almost real,” Godfrey said. “The only thing, the pilot isn’t in the cockpit, he’s on the ground with a transmitter.

“These planes are actual replicas of World War II fighters and bombers. They’re not models; they’re miniature aircraft,” said the 55-year-old enthusiast, one of more than 100 “pilots” from the eastern United States who will land and take off their miniature warbirds from the Chenango Bridge Airport Saturday and Sunday in free day long air shows.

The radio-controlled planes have an average wing span of about eight feet with some measuring up to 12 and 16 feet. They weigh between 30 and 45 pounds and incorporate all the features of a real plane, like workable wing flaps and retractable landing gear.


50 years ago

July 9, 1963

A nation-wide railway strike — if called at 12:01 a.m. Thursday — could put 500 men out of work in the Oneonta area.

While top-level negotiators representing management, labor and the federal government tried to ward off the threatened strike yesterday, railroad officials in Oneonta quietly set up plans for the strike — if it is to take place.

What would happen in Oneonta if the strike is called?

The local operation would shut down. The men in the operating unions would go on strike and those in the non-operating unions are expected to honor the picket lines. 

Earlier when the negotiations bogged down on the national level, local officials through instruction of the Grand Lodge have prepared for what they call “a peaceful withdrawal from service.”

“We don’t expect any violence,” Gordon Haskins, president of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, Local 1, said Monday. 

Mr. Haskins said earlier the four local operating Brotherhoods selected a joint strike committee. Henry Rumenapp of Lower River Street was elected chairman.

If the strike comes, it will be Mr. Rumenapp who will get the word.

And word it will be.

Mr. Rumenapp said he will get a “one word telegram in code” and then the local men will know they are on strike.




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