Publisher Jerry Robinson admires Boeing Museum of Flight poster last week.

Jerry's View: Remembering Tex Rankin

HEY, I KNEW THAT MAN! He was my neighbor in 1928. He lived on Lombard street, a block away from our old house on Russet street in north Portland. He had a boy my age; eight, who went to Hill Miltary academy. He had a snazzy uniform.Which was way better than my scruffy cords.

His dad, in the poster above, was a famous flyer named Tex. He got that name, I guess because he came from Texas. He used to land his Waco airplane at an airport on the north side of the Columbia slough. Rankin field was small and used by a half a dozen flyers. We spent a lot of time there in the summer foraging scraps of rubber shock cord they used making landing gear.

Our house was under the flight path and he came down really low and waved at us.We were down at the airstrip one afternoon. Tex let a couple of us climb into the front passenger seat and taxi down the field and back. It was loud and scary.

I was allowed to brag to my Woodlawn grade school mates of having flown in an airplane. The airstrip was near the stockyards and the slough too.

I got some envy from some guys when I bragged about watching Cora Harvey's dad dispatch cows and horses with a giant steel mallet and watch other gucky stuff at the slaughter house next to the slough where I nearly drowned when I fell into a hole in the floor of a half sunken boathouse. Water came up to my chin.

My big brother heard me yelling. He pulled me out just in time.

I told Tex about that and he just laughed and said something about fishing being dangerous.

Jack Burke, Burien's famous flyer has written a book about flying pioneers like Charles Lindbergh. He can probably tell you about Tex too.

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