By Carlene Baker 

As my flying career ended, I began searching for a great place to live. I selected Montana, andmade three trips between Houston, Texas and Montana. On the first of these trips I stayed at the Alpine Motel in Douglas, WY, a small old motel at the edge of town. 

I started a conversation with the lady who checked me in and I casually mentioned I had worked for TWA. She got very excited and said, "I have to call my mother and tell you are here. My father has passed but she still tells everyone about his early job in California working on the big airplane that Howard Hughes was building.”

She related that ever since she was a small child she had heard the pre-war stories of how her dad had worked for Mr. Hughes, and one night shortly after her parents had gotten married, her mother had taken supper to her Dad. Hughes said he needed a passenger to go up for a test flight with him and took her mother. When the recent movie The Aviator was released, her mom just had to go see it of course. It was the first movie she had gone to see for a very long time."

I enjoyed my time listening to her so much that I told her I would be back, and I did stop to stay there on another of my trips. She told me if I could come again, I was to call ahead and she would bring some TWA-related mementos and things for me to see.

To talk with someone that had been involved in the very early days of TWA was very interesting. I plan to return occasionally and visit further with her!

Carlene Baker (1989 – 2001) was an ATO Agent at MCI and later served as a STL-based Flight Attendant.