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63 Years Flying, From Glamour to Days of Gray

Yes, Mr. Akana has worked as a flight attendant for 63 years, clocking some 20 million miles along the way, the equivalent of circling the globe about 800 times or flying roughly 40 times to the moon and back. Though no one tracks seniority across all airlines, he is widely believed to hold the title of longest-serving flight attendant in the United States. ( Altro...

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Mr. Akana, you are an inspiration to mankind. Show those 60 year old kids, how it's done. Congratulations on a life well lived.
Carl Staib 4
If it had a "Circular Staircase", I believe it had to be a Boeing Stratocruiser. I don't really know but did a DC-6 have two decks? I don't think so. Anyway, my 1st commercial flight was on Stratocruiser back in '54 from NYC thru MSP to Spokane, Wa. VIA N/W. I still remember that flight vividly. My Dad & I went down that stairway...He had a Martini and I had a soda pop and a snack. I was 14 yrs. old then and fell in love about 3 or 4 times. The stewartesses ya know. They were beautiful. All of the men wore suits and the women wore dresses...A far cry from flying in the "Sardine" cans today. I remember looking at the exhaust manifolds that wrapped around the round engines glowed so red, I wondered why they didn't catch on fire. I think it was even before that, that I fell in love with aviation and that ride just confirmed it.
please take into consideration that each flight attendant has to pass their tests which are regularly held. If he fails on one subject - like opening cabin doors - he will not continue to fly.
Yes, I was wondering about that. I am aware of those tests as we have a friend who is a flight attendant for Swiss and I gather they are quite rigorous.
john cook 1
Who's going to Fail 'THAT RON'on a test?
I'm sure he gets a lot of leadway , as he should.
He is vardedicateddcongratulationsns Ron .
john cook 1
Vary dedicated congratulations Ron.
I think my mouse is acting up Sorry.
Mr. Akana could certainly write a book or movie script .. and most likely would sell. "Seeing it all" ... from no TSA and turbo to what it is today ... makes the "PAN AM" tv series look like childs play. American Airlines had recently introduced, their "Senior" flight attendant .. at 40 some years service .. "just a kid". .. Aloha, Mr Akana, Mahalo, for sharing your story.
Congratulations Mr. Akana - I can only admire you! I can only look back at 25 years of Pan Am and 15 years of United - on the ground. Now working at the airport with customers as well as with the flight attendants - and I very well know the stress! ALOHA !
pilot0987 2
It is interesting how things have changed. I also think it is kinda sad that such an old man is working and not retired. I know that it says that he enjoys it, but common. I'm sure that could have kept him employed without having him walk the aisles, and pushing wheel-chairs.
ibpilot72 5
Yes, things have changed! It just shows the work ethic that has been lost in America. We've become a society of give me the most amount of "stuff" with the least amount of work and effort. Management isn't any better. Give us more for less. It isn't sad to Mr. Akana, because going to work and talking to passengers and his co-workers is what keeps him going. Sometimes you can take a person out of aviation, but you'll never take aviation out of a person. Nothing sad about that.
regarding the article about mr akana, in his 80s still working as flight attandent:
I admire this very much, however have my doubts, he can p. e. really handle an emergency situation like someone with few years less on the clock. - Before reacting angry, please, think ist over: open cabin doors, helping pax out under evacuation-terms. anyway, great experience and faboulus job, but ... isn't it time to let the younger have their part?
Had my airline career yanked out from under me because of the AGE 60 RULE. It was wrong then and it would be wrong now to force some one out of the job, because of number. If Mr. Akana, can meet the standards, I applaud his work ethic.
It's interesting to read about how time changes everything. Thanks for posting!
Read about Mr Akana first on the front page of the NYT on Sunday. Good for him, what a fascinating life he is having with the airlines. Few industries have seen such extreme changes, he must have a book full of stories to tell
i agree, that maybe the tests are well passed.-who would dare to ground someone as popular as mr akana. however i still am sure, that a person of that age among the crew is definately a problem in critical situations.
Mike Braum 1
Your correction needs correction. It is a Boeing Stratocruiser


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