The captain of JetBlue Flight 191 has been identified as Clayton Osbon and whatever the cause of his freakout it wasn't a lack of experience as Osbon isn't a new pilot. According to a recent article, Osbon is actually one of JetBlue's original airmen and is (or was) one the company's Flight Standards Captains.
He also may sell weight-loss drugs.
An article originally published by writer Christine S. Lucas in Richmond Hill Reflections and reprinted on her blog describes the pilot as a NetJets captain and flight instructor who went to go work at JetBlue just three months after their first flight in 2000 and has flown for them ever since.
He's had experience flying 35 different aircraft and, as of last year, was approaching 18,000 hours of flight time. Here's how the article profiles him:
Ask a member of the general public about air travel, and you'll likely see them start snorting about delays or the way their over-sized carry-on bumped every passenger's shoulder on the way down the aisle. Were one to meet Clayton Osbon, Flight Standards Captain for JetBlue Airlines, however, one might–say–meet him at a gas station, follow his truck down a winding road and talk with him at a secluded air strip to see what's what.
They might even meet him for breakfast a few days later.
A resident of Belle Island, Clayton lives with his wife of six years, Connye, and enough animals to make a lint-brush essential. He's come dressed in flight attire, and we find a seat in his uncle's hangar off Chevis Road. It's a funny set-up including cushy patio furniture, a propane heater and Sesna [sic] 182 whose wing reaches for my shoulder like the paw of a cat.
There is much I don't know about flying, so we begin with his first flights at the age of 6 or 7 in a plane similar to the one looming over us. "I've been instrument flying since before I could see over the dashboard–sitting on phone books eventually," he tells me.
Osbone's wife was described by ABCNews as being "distraught" and she had no idea why this happened.
Nothing seems to point to why he snapped.
(AP Photo/Steve Douglas)