Airport 1970,

Minute 012: Close Down Runway Twenty-Two

August 16, 2016


“Close down Runway Twenty-Two!” chant the sign-waving protesters at the streetside entrance to Lincoln International.

Mel and Commissioner Ackerman survey the scene. “They’ll break it up and go home… after the TV cameras get a few shots.” Ackerman pales. “TV?” he says.

“A lawyer they hired yesterday arranged for news coverage,” explains Bakersfeld. Ackerman says he needs to tell the other board members about the situation. The commissioner says that the two of them should meet in the board room later to discuss how to calm the protesters.

Just then, a woman in an snow-covered Oldsmobile calls out. “Mel!”

“Hi sis,” says Mel, as he walks to the car. It’s Sarah Demerest, wife of the pilot Vernon Demerest who wrote the disparaging snow clearance report.

“I thought Vern was on Flight Two tonight,” says Mel, looking at his watch. Sarah explains that, with the weather and the traffic, Vern wanted to head over to the airport early, but they managed to sail right through the traffic.

Vern steps out of the car, looks at the protesters, and then back at Mel. “First I thought they were pilots picketing you. I was all set to join them.”

“I heard about your report,” says Vern.

In This Minute

Burt Lancaster as Mel Bakersfeld
Larry Gates as Commissioner Ackerman
Barbara Hale as Sarah Demerest
Dean Martin as Vernon Demerest



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