Maurice Kirk

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April 2008 - Posts

About anything from Warrant for Arrest to our online petition demanding Fair Trials and Compensation, for Maurice and other victims, in the spirit of human rights. For first time visitors, a one-page summary is on a complementary and introductory blog. The latest video of a 12-minute interview with Maurice on Jersey in Dec 2010.

Breaking News:

Political asylum and protection from extradition granted - for the first time since the French Revolution, to a British citizen. See this post here.
  • In Front of the Judge Wednesday

    Good morning

    I haven’t spoken to M as there seems to be a problem with our landline – lots of buzzing and whirring and intermittent stops (probably overhanging branches). He  has left a very brief message on my mobile phone.

    It sounds as though the situation is becoming more serious – if I am reading it correctly.

    It seems that it has been suggested that M was actually going to land on the lawn of the ranch (did not realise that ranches had lawns) but was prevented from doing so by bad weather. I think this very unlikely.

    M is a very proficient aviator who has flown around much of the world in this type of light aircraft, specifically designed for tricky manoeuvres onto battle fields during WWII. If M had intended to land on the lawn he would have done so – bad weather or not (and he has experienced some truly awful weather in the past).

    I understand that he is to appear before a judge in Texas (I don’t know where exactly) on Wednesday. I am unable to contact him as I don’t know in which department of Austin State Hospital he is being held and can get no further than the switchboard.

    I don’t know whether he has been questioned by the Secret Service yet, though I think that this is likely.

    M is somewhat eccentric and is quite capable of rather innocently making such a gesture as leaving a message at the ranch gate for the President. He was and is very grateful the US coastguard retrieved so quickly and efficiently from the Caribbean and has already visited the individuals involved to thank them personally.

    It has not been out of character for M to visit famous people on his travels. He visited Sir Edmund Hillary during his flight around New Zealand and was presented with a new pair of JR Williams boots at the end of the London to Sydney Air Race by John Howard, then Prime Minister of Australia.

    I hope that the US authorities are sympathetic to a rather one-off English eccentric who is bumbling round the world in an 80 mph (maximum ground speed) very old Piper Cub aircraft.

    KK (M’s wife)

  • Psychiatric Update


    M telephoned again this pm.

    He sounded a little more cheerful but is audibly distressed at some of the cases that he is seeing.

    He is v worried about the little aircraft as he heard bad weather last night and just hopes that it was tied down as he requested. Let's hope that he requested politely rather than barking orders as he does to his crew (me, Genevieve, 2 old Springer spaniels and a 3-legged Parson Russell terrier, 2 cats and miscellaneous equines) here at home.

    He expects a psychiatric assessment tomorrow followed by more questions.

    I understand that he did not fly within the prohibited flight area and so hope that this difficulty can be resolved quickly, not least because he is due home on 1 May and its his turn to do the washing up.

    Kind regards

    KK (M’s wife)

  • One flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

    Good evening.

    A very rattled M telephoned this evening at approximately 8pm.

    He is being held (in handcuffs) in the Psychiatric Department of Austin State Hospital which I understand (from its website) to be a psychiatric hospital only.

    At approx 5pm local time yesterday M landed 'outside' the prohibited zone surrounding the ranch of George W Bush. He wished to thank the President for his swift rescue by US coastguards last February (the last drama of this circumnavigation flight). Realising that he could not get close, he landed as described above and walked along the lane hoping to leave a message at the gate.

    He did not reach the gate. Instead a car drove behind him and he found two Smith and Wessons pointed at him by police. He was handcuffed, put in a police car while several other cars drew up (eleven he thinks including the Sherriff) and taken to a Police cell. He was arrested (I’m not clear at which point) and accused of being drunk. After failing a test of walking down a white line, he passed a definitive test showing that he was not and was told that he would be leaving shortly. He was later told that he needed to be cleared by a medic and was driven to Austin State Hospital where he has what he describes as a “minder”. He remains in handcuffs.

    Since hearing from him, I have contacted the FCO and have just received information from a representative in the States called Rebecca. She has confirmed that M is being held, that he was arrested yesterday owing to security concerns and that no charges have been made so far. He is required to have a psychiatric assessment before Secret Services (CIA or FBI) question him further.

    This is rather worrying.

    I have no doubt that M was doing as he claims although this might seem somewhat unlikely to people not familiar with him.

    A vision of Jack Nicholson in “One flew over the cuckoo’s nest” comes to mind…..

    However, as a friend reassured me tonight, “Give the Secret Service personnel one hour with M and they will be sectioned in the adjacent ward at the psychiatric hospital!”

    A more sober reflection came from M who simply said that the ward on which he is being held has some very sad cases.

    KK (M’s wife)

  • Who Else Wants a Talk in Texas?

    Filed under:

    Currently in Middleton/Odessa, Texas...have cub, will travel to give talks.

    US cell  386-341-5607   UK cell 07966523940

  • Houston, Texas and Pelican Award

    Filed under: ,

    Maurice is heading towards Houston Texas as part of his flying tour of the United States for afternoon tea and cucumber sandwiches at AMT Training Solutions, Human Factors Training.

    The Florida Pelican Award 13th April 2008. Today was rather special for an Englishman far from his native country. Sun ‘n Fun, the Florida Air Show, was drawing to a close and I was due to set off, ‘low and slow’, across the Southern States of America in ‘Liberty Girl 11’ for Mexico, South America and beyond.

    Florida Sport Aviation Antique and Classic Association had kindly been sheltering me from both the sun and occasional thunderstorm during the week’s show and as a member had enjoyed the night aerobatics display from their annual banqueting table. The show was the usual spectacular with none of the infernal buzzing of the modern day noisy machines of Extras or Pitts Specials. Graceful ‘old timers’ instead could be heard in the darkness, my occasionally spotting the silhouette of one against the moon as smoke, fireworks, lights or all three, streamed a trail behind her. Shelly Decker and others gathered to give me the prestigious award only given to those who have achieved something, as he wryly put it, “extraordinary and outstanding”. It is known as the Pelican Award, carved out of wood and resembling their ungainly native bird. It was not until later that night, when I was all tucked up in my sleeping bag under the cub, that I remembered the way pelicans land! Now, ‘any landing is a good landing, if you can walk away from it’ and in my case ‘swim away from the sharks’. As the heavy dew dripped off the canvas aircraft around me, I kept asking myself, “Have I understood the real reason for receiving such a special award? My flit through the US to Mexico is going to be fun.


  • A Little Yellow Cub Bound for Texas

    ‘Electrics' for the radios means she needs a wind generator straddled between her pretty little legs.The best job for that will be the BPE-14 Turbo Alternator built by Basic Aircraft Products, Inc., Georgia 30809. My last one served me very well, even soaked in oil from the leaking engine between London and Australia in the 2001 Air Race.

    Better brakes than the ‘make believe' of the 40s are also needed. That must be another set from Grove Brakes of El Cajon, California 92020 who kindly gifted a set for Liberty Girl last year.

    More instruments are urgently needed for high altitude and crossing of the Andes range of mountains for Brazil.

    A new life raft for crossing both the Panama Canal and South Atlantic, later, is urgently needed.

    Improvement on the range for this J3 Piper Cub is urgently needed before I reach Mexico. Wing tank conversion....Super Cub mod?

    Now just who, en route, can help?

    I set off on the16th April from Mid Florida ‘low and slow'.

    Please telephone US cell  3863415607

  • Liberty Girl II sets off for Luisiana and Texas

    Already EAA Chapters and others, on Maurice's route from South Florida to Mexico, are booking for his  talks on the 'Ditching' and 'Flying General Patten's WW11 Piper Cub around the World'.

    Maurice's Cell numbers are:  US  3863415607 UK   +447966523940 

  • Well-Known 'Flying Vet' Visits Fly-In

    "Larger-than-life" pilot Maurice Kirk of Great Britain has had numerous close calls.