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Tupolev Tu-154 (RA-85655)


While searching for a photo from many years back to fulfill a request, I came across this old pic. Taken back in 2011 with a Canon S5 IS camera (that I gave away several years ago), this snap is the only picture I was ever able to get of a Tupolev T-154. I was somewhat far away and it was a hot day under clear skies, so there was no way to overcome the distortion caused by the heat waves rolling up from the hot ramp. Thus, the quality of this snap was doomed, and I knew it before I raised the camera to click it. But I decided I wanted the shot anyway when I saw the KC-10 coming closer on its short final. So, despite the diminished quality, I want this pic in my folder because it is a very rare capture.


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Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
Moments after I caught this scene, I was approached by a senior noncom who asked what I was doing. I IDed myself (as a retired senior noncom) and told him I had taken a picture of the Tupolev triholer. He explained that no photography was permitted in that area without a PA permit, and he advised me to delete all my photos. I deleted them one by one as he watched. But when I came to this shot, I asked (well, OK, it may have seemed more like pleading than asking ... lol) that I be allowed to keep this shot. He looked at it, exclaimed "Da-n, that is a nicely timed picture," and told me I needed to leave the area. I thanked him and left. So of all the snaps I took at the ramp that day, this is the only one that "survived."
Gary... thanks for relating your "backstory" on this superbly timed photo capture!
Viv Pike
Glad you managed to keep it, Gary - it's a great pic. As a retired Senior noncom, you should have "pulled rank" and "advised" him to bugger off.
C.W. Reed
Brings me back to a very HOT day airshow at KSUU in the early 90's! Glad you were able to save this. Thanks so much for posting this Gary! Cheers!!
Gary SchenauerPhoto Uploader
C.W. and Cliff ... TYVM. Glad you enjoyed this pic even tho it's heat stroked.
Howdy, Viv ... LOL. Truthfully, telling him to "bugger off" (huge grin) would have been counterproductive. Admittedly, I lost some snaps that day. But creating a duststorm about it with him would have resulted in my name being added to the wrong "list" in the PA's logbook. Instead, no negative info back then means that today I'm A-OK to go there, take clicks, and (even better) escort a friend or two. In the short term, I lost a couple photos, but I got to keep the one above (which was the truly important one), and now, in the long term, I'm far better off.
Gary... you "chose wisely"... just saying! :-)

(and I speak from experience!)
Tom Vance
cliff731 - what is that referring too? I was never in the Military..?
Tom Vance - I was once many moons ago (circa late 70's) asked by a certain gentleman (Secret Service) to cease snapping photos of a certain Air Force C-141 a/c while boxes of "comm" equipment were being offloaded.

The Starlifter's presence and activity were in support of a coming POTUS visit. He was polite but firmly unequivocal regarding the consequences should I have chosen to ignore his "request"... i.e. - confiscation of my 35mm SLR camera and loss of all exposed film inside it!!!

Of course, I immediately complied with his "request"... and thanked the man for his "corrective input" too!

I'm sure my camera would have eventually returned to me... but certainly sans the film. Not to mention all the other attending consequences such as loss of photo privileges on the base and my name on a "list"... :-)
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