Author's Biography


       About the Author:                                                                                    

     Mike Nelson grew up primarily in Chicago and its suburbs. As a boy he thrilled at the deafeningly loud, phenomenal sight of propeller-driven airliners taking off and flying very low right over him, as he stood just outside the fences at Chicago's Midway Airport. He also grew up with the somber, reverent stigma of airline tragedy; his uncle lost his life in the airline disaster that is the subject of this book.
Countless times throughout his youth the author thought deeply about his uncle’s final moments, straining to understand and to empathize with him. Never could he fathom or fully accept what had happened, and in mid-life he decided to find out as much as he could. His researches led him to a great many surprising places and people, and soon to the completely unexpected resolve to write an entire book about the accident. The result is this, his first published book, entitled after the last words of one of the crewmembers.

Mr. Nelson was a top scholar in college in all manner of subjects, including English Composition, Chemistry, Psychology, Philosophy, Physics, Calculus, Differential Equations, and Computer Programing. His studies lent themselves well to his preparation of the manuscript for this book, some directly and some indirectly, and all of them by strengthening and sharpening his thinking in lasting ways.


He spent over a decade researching, interviewing, and analyzing, steeping himself in the accident and educating himself in aviation and aeronautics, and availing himself of the generous offers made by many retired airline captains to teach him. Writing has been one of his avocations for his whole adult life, and when he turned his investigations of the collision toward creating an entire book, he began anew to develop and refine the expository style that had been his own for many years beforehand. The result is that the authority, clarity, and eloquence of his prose rival those of many established writers.


Mr. Nelson currently resides on a country acreage with his wife in northeast Iowa.