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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

Type rated on A330, B747-400, B747, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Justin Reed

Friday's Fabulous Flyer

Justin Reed
aka The Artful Dodger

Why would a teen orphan without a  pilot’s license be Friday's Flyer? Because Justin recently put his unique set of skills to not only thwart a hijacking, but to land the airliner as well.

The main character of pilot-author Eric “Cap’n Aux” Auxier’s Spy/Fly thriller series, “Code Name: Dodger,” Justin chronicles his latest adventure in Mission 3: Jihadi Hijacking, now available in print or ebook!

Trouble seems to follow this adopted son of a secret agent, and Jihadi Hijacking is no exception.  We caught up with Justin after his wild, Middle Eastern escapade.

Karlene: I heard you love Flight Sim 3000... what do you love about it? 

Justin: Oh, man. It’s so much fun! I used to play it for hours on my computer every day after school. My girlfriend Joya would get kinda miffed when I played it too long; can’t say as I blame her.

The systems work exactly like you see on a real Airbus. And, having had to land the real deal in an emergency, I can tell you it’s like crazy-realistic. But, to tell the truth, ever since that emergency crash landing, well, let’s just say it fried the fun out of the game for me. Talk about stress!

Karlene: You were able to understand the systems . . . did that help you fly the plane?

Justin: Oh, totally. My adopted dad Bob used to fly tiltrotor V-22 Ospreys in the Marines, but that was like before I was even born, and he’d never flown a jet before. So, when it came to flying the A321, he was totally lost. So, I go, “Hey, do you know how to program a CAT 3 Autoland in the MC-DU?” (That’s the Multipurpose Command/Display Unit, which programs the plane.) And he’s like, “The Cat in the Mc-what?” LOL! So, he made me his copilot.

And it’s a good thing, too, cuz I had to help him with all the systems stuff. To tell the truth, though, I was totally in over my head when it came to the actual flying part. But, as it turned out, together we made a pretty good team, and Bob did an amazing job, despite the crash and emergency evacuation. I mean, I’m still here to tell the tale, right?

Oh, and speaking of which, since Bob’s International anti-Terrorism Agency—the ITA—“doesn’t exist,” please remember: Just like the clueless Press has been saying on TV all week, our plane had an “electronic malfunction,” and “the pilot” made a precautionary landing in Israel.

And “None of this ever happened!” (Insert wink face here, LOL!)

Karlene: Terrorists took control of the plane. Could these sim programs help bad guys fly?

Justin: Oh, ya, totally. In fact, I bet that’s how Muhammed Myanmar and his terrorist cell learned to fly it in the first place. Those systems on my computer are so realistic, you can’t imagine. But the real thing’s a lot bigger and louder. And faster!

Karlene: What was the scariest or most challenging thing about flying the plane?

Justin: Well, having a Glock 19 machine pistol pointed at my noggin by one of the world’s most notorious terrorists did not exactly start my flight out in clear blue skies. And then, having his henchman shoot up a bunch of systems and depressurize the plane didn’t help, either.

But, after we kicked their psychotic butts and took back the cockpit, I’d have to say what really threw me was how fast everything happens on a jet. I mean, I’m used to skateboard speed! And, when flying Flight Sim 3000, I can always hit Pause and go to the fridge for a soda.

There’s no “Pause” button in a real plane!

Karlene: What message would you like to give to the kids of the world?

Justin: You know, this has been a wild year for me. For starters, the CIA took me into protective custody to hide me from the evil spy Pharaoh. To be safe, they trained me in all sorts of survival and self-defense, and even some cool spy stuff. I wound up using every bit of that training—along with my street skills—to survive. Then, I had to use those skills to go rescue Bob when he got kidnapped by that drug cartel. Not to mention the hijacking, which nearly lit off World War 3!

But, really, even before all that crazy stuff, back at the orphanage I always had to stand up to bullies. I had to either talk or fight my way out of fixes, because I’m so small for my age.

So, my advice, really, would be: Stand up for what you know is right. You may get knocked around once in awhile, but in the end you can look back and know that you did the right thing, and did something to make the world a better place.

Karlene: Thank you for your time, Justin. And, thank you for your heroics aboard that airplane. Lord knows, we don’t need another World War, and maybe we can all sleep more soundly, knowing that there’s people like your father out there protecting us from evil. Um, that is, if the ITA actually existed. Which it doesn’t.

Justin: Right. And none of this ever happened.

Karlene: Right. 

Enjoy the journey!

1 comment:

  1. Karlene,
    Thanks for that great interview with Justin! You never know just what will come out of that precocious kid's mouth, though you can bet it will be interesting!
    I hope your readers will enjoy Justin's adventures, and to read more about the series (which is GREAT reading for kids, from age 8 to 80), visit:
    Thanks again!


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