Episode 161 – Flying The Knife Edge with Matt McLaughlin

Guest: Matt McLaughlin

Host: Dave Homewood

Recorded: 2nd of September 2017

Released: 15th of September 2017

Duration: 1 hours 6 minutes 16 seconds

In this episode Dave Homewood talks via Skype with Matt McLaughlin, a Kiwi pilot who lives in Hong Kong. Matt grew up in Gisborne and he joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force straight from school. He began training as a pilot, but was hospitalised with illness, and when he returned to training on a subsequent Wings course it all went wrong and he was removed from training.

He then continued flying training with a civilian flying school back home in Gisborne, and gained his commercial pilot’s licence with the plan to join an airline. However when he completed training he took a very different route, moving to Papua New Guinea, and learning the ways of the bush pilot. Matt tells some great stories about flying in and out of mountainous jungle strips, life in PNG, and the other pilots he knew there. It was extremely dangerous flying, and the stakes were high. Sadly many of the pilots Matt knew were killed in accidents.

He went on to fly with Cathay Pacific, which he is still flying with after 22 years. And Matt has recently written his memoirs looking back on those days in Papua New Guinea, in the award winning book “Flying The Knife Edge”, which he also discusses.

Quick Links:

•  Flying The Knife Edge at the Book Depository

•  Flying The Knife Edge on Amazon

•  Flying The Knife Edge on Fishpond

•  Flying The Knife Edge at Whitcoulls

•  Sunday Post Magazine article on Matt and his book

Top, the front and back cover of the first edition of Flying The Knife Edge
Above right: Matt Mclaughlin in New York having just accepted his Independent Publisher Book Award,and left the cover of the reprint with added silver medal (Photos Matt McLaughlin)

The classic Pilatus Porter scene from Air America, which inspired Matt

The trailer for Air America  – a must see film for aviation fans

Note: Music at the end if “Run Through The Jungle” by Creedance Clearwater Revival, a nod to the classic film Air America, in whose soundtrack this superb song is heard

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