Back in 1972, I was in the Navy. I was finally able to fly home on leave after being overseas for over a year. I had made my own flight arrangements, and my Mom and Dad were supposed to pick me up at LaGuardia. It was a long flight, but I knew that once I landed in New York, I was home free.
I had offered one of my buddies a ride from LaGuardia to JFK for his adjoining flight to Iowa. We were two sailors departing from an 8 hour flight after being treated quite well by the airline with plenty of food and drink.
There wasn’t any TSA back then and people could meet you as you left the plane. You can’t imagine my shock and disappointment when Mom and Dad weren’t there. I called home and was told Mom and Dad had left hours ago. Cell phones didn’t exist, so my friend and I were unsure of what to do. That’s when I heard my name paged over the airport speaker telling me to report to the Railroad Desk. At the desk I was told I had a phone call. To my surprise, it was my Aunt Ricky.
She informed me that my Dad had gone to the wrong airport. She then went on to tell me how to get my friend over to JFK. She then told me to put the Railroad man back on the phone. He then gave my friend and me tickets for the train.
He walked us down to the depot and made sure we both got on the right trains. My train took me to 30th Street Station where I was met by my brother Joe and Aunt Ricky. After a short ride home we waited for my parents who were returning from NY. I was never quite sure how Aunt Ricky had pulled this all together, but I will never forgot the thrill of hearing her voice that evening. She took charge of everything while still having a calming effect.