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Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

I Was Hit by an Airplane!

Posted July 24, 2007 6:52 a.m. EDT



We all have a story to tell. Some of us have lots of stories. Strange stories. Funny stories. Heartfelt stories. Sad stories. Inspirational stories.

Today let's concentrate on the strange. What is the strangest thing that has happened to you?

I'll start with a story from my college days. Morganton buddy Steve Gregory was a popular guy. His dad owned a jewelry store and Steve flew a plane. He was an excellent pilot.

One day we flew to a small airport in the Triad. It was Steve, Jimmy Williams and me. Smooth landing by Steve. No problem. Not until we walked up the sidewalk to our car. A rookie pilot was practicing taxiing on the runway and got too close to the pedestrian sidewalk. I was walking in front of Steve and Jimmy. The left wing of the single engine Cessna passed right above Steve's head. But since I'm a good bit taller the wing hit me hard right right in the back of the neck. The impact knocked me down but not out.

I got up, dusted myself off, chatted briefly with the profusely apologetic pilot and went on about my business. I figured I had suffered much tougher hits on the gridiron in high school. Still, I went to the hospital to check things out.

You should have seen the look on the nurse's face when I said: "Yes, ma'am I've just been hit by an airplane." She exclaimed: "Doctor! Doctor! Can you take a look at this poor young man!"

A strange day in the life of Bill Leslie. What was a strange day in your life?