Wouldn't you know it, the week that I am not flying, we get a "Breaking Story" during the 6. Just my luck. My collegue Pete was at the controls and continues until the end of the week. As I have mentioned, we all like to be "on the ice" when the game is on. He brought you the riviting pictures of a "high angle"rescue of a young boy and his dog.
As a viewer, and since I am on my days off, that's what I was, a viewer, I found myself not being able to leave the couch.
It was actually kinda funny as my wife is rivited to the set and I am mumbling about wide shots and peddle turns to avoid seeing the helicopter's skid. Her telling me to keep quiet as she wanted to hear every word from Flight Reporter David Kincaid. But that's how I watch news. I comment. To a person not fimilar with the interworkings of news gathering, it must be annoying, but she is my wife, so I annoy her anyway, it's the natural way.
But watching stories, and knowing how things are done in the aircraft, I found myself in Pete's shoes understanding exactally what he was dealing with. During 40 plus minutes of live TV no commercials, my man Pete had to operate a camera and constantlly adjust for failing light. He had to monitor audio from David's mic, and respond to the station when they called. He would have also had to be in voice communication with Ronn the pilot, and as the IFB line from the station to the helicopter is known for dropping out after several minutes, he would have had to re-establish the line so David could hear the producers and or Bill and Pamala as they speak to him. Again all while Pete is concentrating on following the action on the ground. Now add to this, he is on a long lens and is probibly 2000 ft or more from the cliff where the rescue was taking place.
I am sure that you see we have to be part Octopus to keep your digits on all of the controls that need attention. Yes Ronn was the pilot, Dave was doing the talking, (which comes naturally to Mr. Kincaid) but the busiest guy at CTV was my friend and fellow flight camera operator Pete Cline for that 40 plus minutes.
The story had a happy ending. Boy and dog rescued and it all happened LIVE for those watching CTV News at 6 last evening. We like those kind of stories, lots of drama, yet nobody get hurt.
Good job lads, but try to save some of the good stories for me on my next flight week, OK.
Nice goin' Pete!