Sitting On Top of the World

By Tom Andrews

December 2016

My dad, Lloyd W. Andrews, started at Boeing Wichita in 1947. He started on the B-47 line and within a couple of years moved to Modification. This would be where he would complete his 33 years at Boeing. Dad retired in 1980. His goal was to be retired as long as he had worked at Boeing. Sadly, we lost him in 2003.

Dad, mom and I traveled a lot with Boeing. We were very much a proud Boeing family. Together, we made trips to Rapid City, S.D.; Roswell, N.M.; Mississippi; Fort Worth, Tex; Louisiana; and Seattle. I got to see the U.S., thanks to Boeing.

When I was about 5 years old, we were in New Mexico. Dad was working on B-52s. One evening, Dad took me to one of the hangars where work was being performed on a 52. With his help, we climbed up into the B-52 and into the cockpit. To me, it was like climbing a mountain! At one point I remember saying, "I can't make it, Daddy," but make it we did. I sat in the cockpit for a while and I was convinced no one could be any higher and remain on earth!

I don't remember getting back down, but I sure remember that climb up. I have no idea how many rules Dad broke that night. He could not have made a bigger impression on me! How many 5-year-old explorers had sat in the cockpit of one of America's strategic deterrents?!?

I spent four years in the Navy. I have traveled the Untied States and the world. I have worked in secure areas and regular everyday places. To this day, I have not had an adventure as big as a B-52!!! That is my Boeing memory. One I will keep forever.

Dad and Me.

Andrews Family photo