Nate Stork
December 6, 2006


Captain Nathan Laurence (Nate) Stork passed away, 12/6/06,  7am pst, at Kaiser Hospital in Redwood City, California.  Nate was born on 9/29/1921 in Walsh, Illinois.  Nate was a long time Captain for Pacific, Hughes Airwest and he retired from Republic as a DC-9 Captain based in SFO.  Nate's long time friend and fellow Captain, Bill Ramsey presented the following letter to United Air Lines to be given to the pilots who were carrying Nate's remains back to Illinois where he was burried next to his mother and father:


To: The Captains of UAL flight 770, SFO-DEN 12 December and UAL flight 408, DEN-STL 12 December

Fr: Captain Bill Ramsey, Northwest Airlines

Dear Captain(s):

Today you are carrying a very special "passenger" with you. That "passenger" is Captain Nathan (Nate) Stork of Republic Airlines and he is being carried back to his home town of Walsh, Illinois in a body container. Nate passed away on 12/6 in Redwood City and will be buried next Saturday in Walsh, Illinois.

Nate was, to say the least, quite a character. He enlisted in the US Navy during WW2 and flew the PB4Y Flying Boat The PB4Y was basically a B-24 that had been converted into a flying boat. After the war ended he wanted to fly for the airlines but he didn't have a DC-3 type rating. As the story goes, one day Nate "borrowed" a DC-3 for a few hours from the Navy and took his checkride. He later returned the airplane and found that no one had even missed it!

Nate was hired by Pacific Airlines in 1947. (I think it was 1947). Pacific later merged with West Coast Airlines and Bonanza Airlines to become Airwest. Howard Hughes later purchased Airwest and changed the name to Hughes Airwest. As you may know, Hughes Airwest later merged with Republic Airlines. Republic is now part of Northwest Airlines. After the Hughes and Republic seniority lists were merged Nate was Number 1 on the list. Nate was always based in SFO. During his airline career Nate flew the DC-3, Martin 404, F-27, 727, and DC-9. I flew as Nate's co-pilot on the DC-9 many times back in our Hughes Airwest days.

Nate retired on September 29, 1981 on his 60th birthday. He never found the right girl to marry, but he sure chased after quite a few!

My request to you is simple: Please give Nate as smooth a ride as possible on his final flight. Maybe ATC will even give you "direct" when they normally wouldn't if they know that Nate is on board.

Finally, try to "grease it on" for Nate. I'm sure that he would appreciate your efforts.

Thanks for reading this and considering my request.


Bill Ramsey

NWA DC-10 Captain