April 19, 2009
Finally found some personal information about Flight 1549 Air Traffic Controller, Patrick Harten. Still don’t know how long it took for him to find out they survived the water landing. I’m curious as to what he thought, felt and did immediately after.
AP’s JIMMY GOLAN did an excellent interview with Harten around a related, non-related topic.
Turns out 35 y/o Harten is a triathlete. Still a relative newcomer (3 years), he has competed in 3 marathons and two triathlons. He ran a personal best in the Boston Marathon last year (2:58:58) and is hoping to do it again…this time with a twist.
He requested and was granted bib #1549 – something not normally done.
But clearly if there were ever an exception this is it. Competitors customarily are assigned numbers according to their times. He would have been somewhere around there or lower.
HARTEN: It got me thinking. It would be very neat if I ran with the number 1549.
HARTEN: For me, it was more of a sentimental value. For me it’s a way to acknowledge my role in the miraculous events of that day. And being able to do that participating in an event that I love is a beautiful thing.
Boston Athletic Association executive director GUY MORSE:
He was part of a life-changing event, what turned out to be a very positive story….We just thought this would be an extra motivating factor to help him have a great day.
Harten, on the job for 10 years, says running and competing help dissipate the inherent stress of his profession.
HARTEN: And it’s a healthy way of doing it, too. I found that through the training and the racing my stress levels have definitely gone down a lot. It definitely works for me. Overall, I found I’m happier.
Explains why he was so cool.
The marathon length 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Boston is about the distance from LaGuardia to Teterboro Airport and back.
Last month he and his wife, Regina, adopted a 20-month-old boy from Russia. Seems he has been changed for the better.
Air Traffic Controller Patrick Harten before Congress