I have never understood the theory that the airspace was conflicted between the two airstrips. Griffiss was restricted airspace, and their flight pattern was on the north side of the river and canal. Oneida county was restricted to the south side of the canal.
Private aircraft made mistakes and landed several times at Griffiss. Some were diverted their because they had in flight emergencies and Griffiss had more crash capability than OC.
Allegheny had an aircraft blow several tires on take off. It was diverted to griffiss, and the runway was foamed for it. The plane landed safely in the foam, and the griffiss firefighters assisted all the passengers off of the aircraft.
I was assigned quite often to the tractor trailer runway foamer, but that incident was before I went to work there. We also used to go and stand by at the OC Airport crash house when their crash truck was out of service, so the airfield would not have to shut down.
Griffiss would make an outstanding cargo port. It is also great to see the aircraft sitting on the flightline awaiting maintenance at the company that is in Hanger 101. I am encouraged by the growth at Griffiss. I was very depressed and despondent to see the grass growing high and the buildings half abandoned when the base first closed. Progress is being made, and I am very happy to see the place thrive again. It is doubtful that it will ever reach the employment numbers it had as an Air Force base, but it is a formidable place of employment and growing.
Clipper, I survived the excitement (or was it terror?) of two emergency landings on foamed runways as a crewman in Hueys. The first time was because of mechanical failure in the hydraulics. Before then, I had no idea there was such a thing as crash trucks.
The second time was because the Huey had a belly-full of 51-caliber lead. That one was definitely terrifying because I knew what to expect.
The random acts of kindness that we perform for one another, are far greater than any “miracle” we could discover or any riches we could accumulate. - Ralph