Saturday, January 17, 2009

Janet Haberbush - Windermere Real Estate Broker

Janet Haberbush.
Janet Haberbush - Windermere Real Estate Broker.
Janet visited our Inventive Productions studios to meet about the possibility of our doing a recruiting video for your family business. Janet's father had been one of the first franchisee's of the Windermere Real Estate company back over twenty years ago. Janet's father sounds like a really great guy who treated both clients and employees with a great deal of respect and integrity.
Janet, with her husband, now run and operate five Windermere offices in the Seattle area.
While Janet was here at the studio, we went ahead and did our Basic Video Biography interview with my 124 specialized questions about her life. It is fantastic to hear the great stories of a person's life and about their family background.
Janet is a very upbeat and inspirational person and business owner. I appreciate the opportunity to capture her life story for her family.

Herb Blanchard - US Air Force & US Navy 1962-1972

Herb Blanchard.
Herb Blanchard - US Air Force & US Navy Seabee - 1962-1972
I really enjoyed meeting and interviewing Herb. He is a real nice guy.
Herb came to our Inventive Productions studios to be interviewed for my documentary "The NEW Fighting Seabees."
Herb was born in 1937 in Massachusetts. He enlisted in teh US Navy in 1962.
Over the years Herb served in Alaska, Japan, Okinawa, and Vietnam.
He told me some great stories about the culture and life of the Seabees. He talked about how he was involved in the building of the road known as HIGHWAY ONE in Vietnam. Some of Herbs skills include bulldozer, heavy equipment, cranes handling nuclear weapons, and helping to build schools in Vietnam.
I really enjoyed my interview with Herb. He is a great guy.

Barron Hilton - Legend of Aviation - Friend of Johnny Myers

Barron Hilton
Barron Hilton - Legend of Aviation, Friend of Johnny Myers
My GPS said it was recalculating the route, which means I might be lost. This made me worry that I might be late for my meeting with Barron Hilton. But it all worked out and I made it in time.
I entered the World Headquarters of the Hilton Hotels and was met by the security team. I told them I had a meeting with Barron Hilton and my contact person was Pat. They called upstairs and said to me that Pat would be down shortly.
I had my camera equipment in light bags so it would be easy to carry and setup for the interview. In a few moments, a tall guy with a big smile named Pat approached and took me up to a nice conference room where I could setup my equipment. Pat helped me set up the room so it would look good in the camera frame.
After I was ready, in came Mr. Barron Hilton and we had a nice video interview. Barron was a great friend to Johnny Myers. They had spent many years in their friendship and Barron had fond memories of their times fishing and flying together. I could tell by my short time with Mr. Hilton that Johnny Myers was a really nice guy. I wish I had met Johnny Myers. It sounds like he was a real character and a real quality man of integrity.
These days its hard to see many heroes amongst us. I know we just need to look closer to find the heroes. When meeting men and women like Barron Hilton and Bob Hoover and Emily Howell Warner, I feel inspired about the good in people. I wish everyone had a chance to meet people like these. Especially teenagers. I think that every teenager should meet a real life hero. Maybe they would get inspired to become a hero too. Barron Hilton was a very nice guy to me and I appreciate him taking the time to meet with me to talk about Johnny Myers.
Thanks goes to everyone who helped make the interview possible.

Tony Bill - Filmmaker, Aviator

Tony Bill
Tony Bill - Filmmaker, Aviator
It was a beautiful clear morning in Venice Beach, California. I had driven there early because I was afraid I wouldn't get a parking spot. But there was no problem on this Monday.
I was there at the steps to Barnstorm Films, the production company owned by filmmaker Tony Bill. My goal was to interview Tony for a short video biography I am making for the Legends of Aviation tribute dinner scheduled on Jan 22 in Beverly Hills.
Tony was being recognized for his life-long love for aviation and for his contributions to promote the Aviation industry through his films, including his recent film FLYBOYS.
I remember Tony from my early days as a student at UCLA. Tony Bill had just made the movie MY BODYGUARD and was very inspirational to me because he had made a hit movie from a low budget film he had struggled to complete.
Over the years Tony had produced and directed many successful filmmaking ventures.
That Monday, I interviewed Tony on a patio beside his upstairs office. His office was real cool, with lots of great movie posters, including one big one from the movie THE STING, which Tony had co-produced. It was one of my very favorite movies.
During our interview, Tony talked about his love for flying. He talked about how he first learned to fly and his love for gliders and soaring. Tony told me about how much he loved sailing and how the gliders were awesome. He told me how he had switched to powered aircraft many years ago and how he has flown over 50 different kinds of aircraft over the years. Tony said that maybe he would return to gliders one day.
He called his company Barnstorm because of his passion and love for the freedom of flying to the small towns all across America. He said that flying gives you freedom and it is a fantastic way to see this country.
Tony talked about his love for aviation and his great admiration of guys like Bob Hoover and the other Legends of Aviation. I could sense that he really does love these guys.
I really liked my short interview with Tony. As I was leaving, I told him a little about my new documentary SHIP OF MIRACLES and asked if it would be ok to send him a copy. He say sure. I really think it would be great to make a feature film around the story behind SHIP OF MIRACLES, because its a great Christmas story, with all the great elements of a good movie, including heroes, villains, suspense, compassion, and a happy ending. I told Tony about how it was a true Christmas story of how Americans saved 100,000 civilian refugees on Christmas 1950 during the Korean War.
I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to meet these great Legends of Aviation. They are true heroes and deserve the recognition they will receive at the event next week.
I hope they like the videos we are making for them.

Luke & Wes Myers - Grandsons of a Hero Aviator

Luke & Wes Myers

Luke & Wes Myers, Grandsons of a Hero Aviator.

It was a gorgeous Sunday morning in Southern California. I drove up the beach past Malibu in my rental car, looking at all the joggers in bikinis. After a brutal winter up in Seattle, this sunshine was a great change for me.

I drove up the hill in Pacific Palisades to meet with Luke and Wes Myers, two grandsons of the legendary fighter pilot and test pilot pioneer Johnny Myers.

I was there to interview these grandsons for a short video biography I am making for the Legends of Aviation tribute dinner scheduled for Jan 22 in Beverly Hills.

Wes and Luke are great guys. They showed me terrific hospitality and generosity. I quickly set up my lights and camera and sound equipment.

They told me incredible stories about their memories of their grandfather. I could tell that they both had a tremendously close relationship with their grandfather. Both Luke and Wes were pilots too. There is aviation in the Myers blood.

I really enjoyed hearing the funny stories about the character and courage of Johnny Myers. He was an attorney who gave up his law practice because he wanted to fly. Over the years he flew them all. Johnny Myers had made many friends over the years and he was an iconic person.

Johnny Myers was world famous for his help in developing the Flying Wing and the Night fighter jets, predecessors to the Stealth bombers used today.

Wes and Luke brought out lots of great pictures of their grandfather. They told me some awesome stories about how Johnny flew helicopters and flew airplanes in his 80s. He loved to fly in the Reno Air Races, too.

Johnny had died less than a year ago at the age of 96 and it was a bit emotional for the family to talk about him. I could sense the pride and love these grandsons had for their grandfather.

I really enjoyed meeting Luke and Wes. I hope they like the video biography I am making about their grandfather.

Linden Blue - Legend of Aviation - Entrepreneur

Linden Blue - Legend of Aviation - Entrepreneur
The sun was shining and it was an awesome California day in January. Totally clear skies and no smog. I drove down south towards San Diego on my way to meet Linden Blue at his office at the Palomar Airport near Carlsbad.
I was there to interview Linden Blue for a short video biography I was creating for the Legends of Aviation tribute event scheduled for Jan 22 in Beverly Hills. This is like the Academy Awards for the Aviation industry. I have been really enjoying the opportunity to meet and interview such American heroes.
Linden greeted me at the entrance to his office. He had made a special trip in to meet with me on a Saturday. He took me into a hangar and I found a good spot to do the interview, inside of a cockpit. I quickly setup my lights and camera and sound equipment. And the interview began.
Linden Blue was living a great American success story.
Linden told me stories about how when he was a kid he saw the townspeople of the small town in Colorado where he lived gather together to create a runway on the edge of the town. He talked about how he was mesmerized by the sight of his first airplane land on that runway. He was hooked on aviation.
While in college he and his brother Neal had learned to fly. They had dreams of flying and living in South America, becoming successful businessmen. Well their dreams came true. It did not take long for their picture to make to the cover of Life Magazine and instantly they became world famous.
Over the years Linden and his brother flew many times up and down from Latin America where they had bought a banana plantation.
Later Linden went to work for Lear Jets in the early days of the business-class aircraft industry. Linden Blue worked in strategic planning, and he learned a lot about the ways aircraft were designed.
Linden told me how he wanted to build lower cost, more efficient aircraft.
Today Linden is a successful businessman, involved in several important industries including nuclear power, aviation drones, and new aviation technologies.
I learned in my interview that Linden was a nice guy who loved aviation down to his core. When we talked about flying, his face lit up, just like that little boy who saw that first airplane on that runway in Colorado.

Bob Hoover - America's Greatest Living Pilot?

Bob Hoover - America's Greatest Living Pilot?
It was a beautiful sunny day in California. I had gotten up real early that morning in Seattle, fighting snow and bitter cold to get to the airport on time. I had slept a little on the plane, so when I saw the sunshine, it really made me feel alive.
I rented a car and drove straight to Palos Verdes. It was about an hour from the airport, south and then straight up a large, very large hill. I made it to the top and could not believe the incredible views. It was a crystal clear morning, so you could see for probably a hundred miles.
I rang the bell and was met by a very tall, slender gentleman named Bob Hoover. I was there with Bob for the purpose of doing a video interview for the Legends of Aviation project for Airport Journals.
I set up my lights and high definition video camera, tripod, and sound equipment. There was a magnificent view out the back deck. On the inside walls were probably a hundred photos of very famous people. While setting up my equipment, I could not help but notice people like Presidents of the United States and other famous people in the photos.
Bob and I sat down and talked for about three hours. Bob told me how he learned to fly when he was a young boy near Nashville. He told me in detail how he overcame his air sickness problem and how he taught himself how to do rolls in the airplane. He was in the Tennessee National Guard, and became a top pilot for the US Army.
Bob told me how he had the job to bring over new planes for the pilots in Europe and to take back the shot up ones. Bob earned the Distinguished Flying Cross for his courage in bringing back a very important airplane from Europe.
Bob had 58 successful missions in the 52nd Fighter Group flying the Spitfires. He was shot down on his next mission and was taken a prisoner by the Germans. He was put into a Stalag prison camp.
Bob told me his incredible story of escaping from the Stalag, stealing a German plane and flying to the Netherlands, where he got surrounded by people with pitchforks because they thought he was a German because of the plane he flew.
After World War II, Bob became a test pilot and worked closely with Chuck Yaeger on the X-1 program to break the sound barrier. Later he became a test pilot for North American Aviation, and helped train the American pilots on the F-86 in the Korean War. Bob told me a great story about how, even though he was technically a civilian, he blew up a bridge for the Allies in Korea.
Bob holds several record for flying. He is very famous for a stunt where he poured a glass of ice tea while doing rolls in his plane, all without spilling a drop. You can see this stunt on You Tube.
Bob really is a true hero and seems like a living-John Wayne to me. He is a great guy who has mentored many pilots over the years. Bob told me about his friendship with lots of great pilots, like Charles Lindberg and Jimmy Doolittle.
After my interview with Bob, I started looking all over the internet and on Youtube to see him in action. I am going to buy Bob's book to read more about his interesting life.
When I got back to Seattle I couldn't wait to see the interview footage. Bob did a super job. I hope he likes the short video we are making about him.

Johnny Myers - American Hero Test Pilot

Johnny Myers: American Hero - Test Pilot, Aviator, Attorney

A few months ago I was contacted by a Writer-Director, Robert Dal Collette, who told me about an exciting project about fighter pilots, jet test pilots, and legendary pioneers of aviation. It was called the "Legends of Aviation" tribute to be held in January in Beverly Hills. Sort of like the Academy Awards for Aviators. Robert explained that we would be creating about nine short biographical videos for the recipients of this years awards. I became very excited about this project, because creating video biographies are my favorite thing in the world.

The first of the nine projects was to be a tribute film about the recently iconic aviation test pilot Johnny Myers. I had never heard of Johnny Myers, but every pilot I asked, surely knew of him. He was a great mentor to so many people. He once was a very successful lawyer for famous movie stars like Bing Crosby, but he gave up his lawyer life so he could pursue his love for flying.

Johnny Myers became the top test pilot at Northrup, courageously testing several of the top secret jets over many years. He is very famous for his role in testing and developing the first night fighter plane, the Black Widow P-61.

His nickname was "Maestro."

Charles Lindbergh credited Johnny Myers for saving his life once down in New Guinea.

Johnny Myers had passed away last year so we couldn't interview him, so I was fortunate to interview two of his grandchildren, veteran pilots Bob Hoover, Clay Lacy, Bill Anders, Tony Bill, Linden Blue, Barron Hilton, and several other pilots who all knew his story.

The tribute dinner is coming up this January 22nd at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. I hope everyone likes our video biography.

Martie Johnson - West Point - Marines - Iraq - Chaplain

Martie Johnson, Jr.
My life will never be the same after meeting Martie Johnson, Jr.
Martie was kind enough to come to our Inventive Productions studios to be interviewed for my new documentary, "The New Fighting Seabees."
In came this loud, confident, and boisterous man named Martie. He was a bundle of energy. He came into the studio dressed in his US Navy uniform.
As I began to interview Martie on camera, I started to realize that this interview was going to be full of surprises.
Martie was born in Philadelphia in 1965. His father and mother led a career Army family. In his childhood Martie moved every two years. His father's career took them all across America and Europe.
Martie talked about the special proud moment he told his parents that he had been accepted to West Point. He talked about the painful heartbreak he caused when he quit West Point three years later. Martie talked about how he went to Wall Street and became a stockbroker. Then he talked about how he enlisted in the Marines and how he handled all the pressures. He talked about how he was on the front lines in Iraq. Then he talked about how he became a Chaplain.
Martie talked about his love for the Seabees and what they stand for. He talked about the incredible experience of being there in Mississippi with the Seabees during and following the Katrina Hurricane destruction.
Overall, Martie's interview taught me a lot of lessons about life. He showed how a man could dedicate his life to helping others, one hundred percent.
Thanks Martie for taking the time to let me interview you.

Patti Payne - Voice Over Talent - Writer

Patti Payne

I was first introduced to Patti Payne by Jeff Kirby, CEO of Puget Sound Security in Bellevue. Jeff suggested I use Patti's great voice over skills for the video we are creating for Jeff. This last week, Patti came to our studio and recorded that very Voice Over. She came to the studio totally prepared and really did a super job. Our video for Puget Sound Security should be finished in a few days. Patti's voice turned out great. Thanks very much for your help, Patti.

Brian Sweet - US Navy - Seabees - Iraq

Brian Sweet

Brian came over to our Inventive Productions studios in Redmond, WA to be interviewed for the new documentary "The New Fighting Seabees." While he was here, we also asked him other questions so we could send in his DVD footage to the Library of Congress under the Veterans History Program.

Brian has served in the US Navy since 1986 until his retirement in Oct 2008. He reached the rank of Commander. Brian served in numerous posts including time at Norfolk, Virginia and in Falluja, Iraq.

Brian told us some incredible stories about his experiences working with the Seabees.

For more information about the NEW Fighting Seabees documentary, go to

Bill Neubauer - US Navy - Seabees - 1953 to 1991

Bill Neubauer
I really enjoyed my time interviewing Bill Neubauer. Bill is a great guy.

Bill was at our green screen studio for an interview for the new documentary film, "The New Fighting Seabees."

Bill was born in 1932 in Omaha, Nebraska. He served in the US Navy, both Regular Navy and Seabee. He enlisted in the Navy in January 1953 during the Korean War and finally ended as an E-6 First Class Builder in 1991.

Bill served in the Far East, including Singapore, Phillipines, Japan, and Hong Kong.

Bill told some great stories about the humanitarian work the Seabees have done over the years.

Greg Shaw - US Army- 1st Calvary Division - Vietnam

Greg Shaw (1969)
Greg Shaw (today)

Greg Shaw came to our green screen studio to record his free interview for the Veteran's History Project for the Library of Congress.

We have volunteered to do 100 free video interviews of veterans for the great Library of Congress program called the Veterans History Project.

Greg Shaw served for his country in the US Army during the Vietnam era.

His job was to receive the missions reports and then to give them to the officers on the front lines in Chinook helicopters. Greg had some incredible photos from his time in Vietnam.

Greg left the service as an E-5 Specialist. Today Greg is a successful real estate broker working in Magnolia for Windermere.

Bob Moeller - US Navy Seabee - 30 years

Bob Moeller

Bob Moeller came in to our green screen studio in Redmond to be interviewed for our new documentary film "The NEW Fighting Seabees."

Bob served over 30 years in the US Navy, including time in Vietnam, Japan, and several places in the US.

Bob earned two Legion of Merit Awards plus many other medals. He was a Vice Commander, Naval Facilities Command.

While Bob was here we went ahead and asked our normal 124 questions we ask in a regular video biography interview.

Thanks, Bob, for all your help with our documentary project.