Solomon Airlines has paid tribute to the passing away of Solomon Airlines founder and aviation pioneer Laurie Crowley.
Crowley, 93, passed away in hospital, last week at Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. after a period of illness.
Crowley and a group of friends founded Megapode Airways in Honiara in 1962.
Solomon Airlines Chief Executive Officer, Captain Ron Sumsum praised Crowley for his foresight and vision in setting up what would become Solomon Islands’ national carrier.
Solomon Airlines’ Manager Flight Operations International, Captain Darryl Toepfer attended the funeral service in Junee, NSW, on Monday, on behalf of Solomon Airlines board, management and staff.
“Crowley’s legacy will continue into the future and will not be lost on forthcoming generations who play a part in Solomon Airlines ongoing history.”
Solomon Airlines, said Captain Toepfer, was fortunate and honoured to have Crowley attend the airlines’ 50th anniversary celebrations in November last year.
At the celebrations Crowley shared his Solomon Islands flying experience, which he described as wonderful and incident free. He was also amongst the first passengers to test fly Solomon Airlines new Dash 8 aircraft “Megapode”.
Crowley started the Megapode Airways with a single Aztec aircraft and developed it into a popular service flying between Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.
As an avid pilot, Crowley continued to fly into his sixties with an estimated 33,000 hours of flying time.
Press Release, Solomon Airlines