Flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.
The quote — from “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” author Douglas Adams — is among the quotes, greetings and names that adorn a steel beam at Lawton-Fort Sill Regional Airport. But only if you know where to look (hint: look on the south end of the 30-foot-high roof).
Airpot officials held a party of sorts Wednesday morning, giving a variety of people the opportunity to put their names to the last beam being erected over the outdoor area roof of the secured passenger holding area under construction on the terminal’s west side. That holding area is the largest project associated with the $15.3 million in construction work that is modernizing the airport terminal. Completion is about six months out, said Airport Director Barbara McNally.
But as construction continues, project superintendent Larry Adair had an idea: how about letting people sign that final beam before it was lifted into place? And by people, he meant everybody, from the members of the Herring Construction work crew who are building the holding area, to American Eagle/Envoy workers and company officers who flew in for the event, to airport workers, to the airport’s governing board, to the architect who designed the new facility.
That final 60-foot-long, 9,000-pound beam was lifted into place Wednesday after everyone had a chance to sign their names. Adair said continuing construction, to include protective surfaces, will preserve those names and quotes, meaning they will be visible to future generations should the roof’s supporting structure be opened back up in, say, 50 years.
“It’s cool,” said McNally.