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Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Lifelong Ocala resident shares thoughts on commercial flights

To the Editor:

I was born in Ocala 63 years ago. The need for commercial airline service here has been increasing just about as fast as the population of the Ocala area. I’ve read letters regarding the noise that a jet aircraft would produce, and these letters were submitted by people who not only live along the flight paths but in outlying areas as well.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions. They need to take the time to think about others. We have a lot of older folks, like myself, that don’t drive and are living on a budget. Personally, I have to ride Village Airport Transportation which costs me an additional $100 per round trip. I travel every month from March until November, and for those of us on SSI, that hurts. The trip that I just booked using discount airlines and transportation cost me $480 round trip to Dallas/Fort Worth.

Not only is it expensive when planning to fly out in the early morning (my flight departs Orlando at 6:13 a.m.), but I have to meet the transportation van at 3 a.m. at Steak-N-Shake in order to be on time. For those of you that drive, it’s not a problem.

Also, take the time to think about how much a commercial airline would benefit folks going to events at the World Equestrian Center. It’s not just about horses, either. They have dog shows there and so much more.

Please be considerate of everyone’s needs. I’m pretty sure that there won’t be more than three or four flights in and out of Ocala per day, and their direction of flight changes with the wind conditions. If you live along a flight path, you would get used to the noise pretty fast and not really notice it at all. Airlines mostly fly during the daylight hours and that helps keep the noise down at night.

It’s past time that we brought commercial flights here. It would benefit so many people. It would create jobs, make life a little easier for those of us that fly, and it would help bring in possible new residents to Marion County. It’s really a win-win for everyone.

Martin Marszalek
Ocala resident

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