After being born in Frankfurt (that would be Germany, not Kentucky), Jay's family moved to Vandalia, Ohio where Jay spent his time learning to play the greatest game ever (baseball), by smacking the daylights out of fastballs from his next door neighbor Roger Clemens. (Disclaimer: At 9 years of age, this would have been a pre-steroid era.)
During his high school years at Carlisle High School, Jay spent most of his free time at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Center helping his Dad to build the condominiums at the course for a variety of Cincinnati sport's legends like Nancy Lopez, Ross Browner, Tom Seaver and others. In 1981 he watched his father build the ATP Tennis Stadium for the likes of Connors, McEnroe, Lendl and Borg.
Jay's passion for baseball continued thru 1983 when he was invited to tryout for the 1984 US Olympic Baseball Team. A torn hamstring six weeks before the tryouts ended his baseball dream. (He was able to write about the greatest game ever played for Reader's Digest, winning their Editor's Choice award and having it read by more than 88 million people worldwide.)
It was then Jay's attention turned towards the airline industry, where he loved the daily challenges of cancelled flights, delayed luggage (they weren't referred to as 'lost' until they were MIA for 90 days), weather problems and the always-wonderful Sunday after Thanksgiving! Cities Jay worked at included Monroe (LA), Florence (AL), Cincinnati, and Dayton. It was also during these years Jay was able to serve as the Travel Coordinator for the Detroit Lions - spending his Sunday afternoons on the NFL sidelines!
Jay continues that adrenaline rush by educating travelers with information specifically designed to help them find the cheapest of fares, resolve complaints, and having multiple options when flights are cancelled.
Jay lives in the Dayton area with his wife, Sherry and their two boys, and his older daughters serve as nurses to Dayton area hospitals.
If you have any questions, you can contact Jay through his Day Trading website - he is an avid Day Trader and teaches others on his system. (www.daytradefun.com)
Mornings on Jim Scott's show
When I hear people complain that we are no safer today (when flying) than before the attacks of 9/11, I cringe because no statement could be further from the truth.
We are considerable safer today as we fly than before 9/11.
In the time prior to that horrible day in September, checked bags were not screened - unless we had a reason to do so. That means more than 3 million flights a year would take to the skies with hundreds of unscreened pieces of luggage in the cargo compartment of the aircraft. It was something which used to keep me up at nights, because it was a gaping hole in the commercial aviation security. A passenger could place anything in their luggage and had it contained an instrument of terror, we would not have known until it was too late.
In fact, anytime we had an aviation disaster, the biggest fear among many in the aviation industry was it was the first crash of many - thinking someone had finally used this huge hole in security against us. Thankfully, those fears never materialized and once the traveling public was made aware of the fact checked bags were not screened, it was finally made an issue of priority and the desperately needed equipment and procedures were provided to airports across the country.
Cargo screening was the next hurdle, since cargo was not screened either before being placed onto commercial flights. While this took agonizingly longer than checked bags, we finally reached the point where cargo was being screened as well.
Detecting explosives was another huge challenge. Internationally we knew of flights which were destroyed because passengers were able to sneak explosives onto the flight. That’s the problem with the magnetometers we have used for decades at security checkpoints, they were designed to detect metals - not liquids or powders.
In a hasty move to address this newest challenge, the TSA rolled out “puffer machines” to be used at security checkpoints. These random checks would check to see if there was any explosive trace residue coming from passengers who were being screened. Unfortunately these $175,000 machines did not work as well as advertised and the focus turned quickly to the full body imaging scanners.
Over the past few years these machines have been rolled out to airports around the world and while there are security issues at play, they are far better than magnetometers which do nothing to detect powder or liquid explosives.
The next generation of screening machines will be far more sophisticated than these, but for now it is an added layer of security which does help to increase the level of security for all who travel.
Today we also see better communication between law enforcement and government agencies, something that was unheard of in the days prior to 9/11. This enhanced information-sharing environment has helped agencies around the world to stop attacks on commercial airliners before they even came close to fruition.
Yes, we have a long way to go and there is much more which can be done to increase our security levels around the country. However, it is nice to know that we continue to honor each precious life which was lost that tragic day by striving, through enhanced technology and training, to make commercial aviation safer for everyone who takes to the skies.