By Mike MacGregor

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Boeing Triad-Mike,Hans,Arne
Sue and I knew Hans and Meng and their wonderful family since our times at Boeing together where we first began our working careers after university. I started in the beginning of 1966 and Hans arrived about 1968 from Australia. We left Boeing when they went down the tubes in 1970. Hans mangaged to remain in the industry throughout his career. I left and went into the paper industry, a very conservative capital-intensive place but where I also ended up having a great career. Despite going our separate ways we stayed connected all these 34 years. I still until just now communicated at least several times/week with both Hans and Frankie. In fact (swallowing hard), I still have several emails from Hans in my IN Box as I write this. Both those guys always sent me the most clever stuff of any people I know. You know what I mean. A lot of the stuff you just dump after hardly reading it but theirs I always looked forward to.

Hans and Arne
In the 2 years at Boeing we did a lot of things together as families (the Heydrichs are among the most family-oriented people we know). We still have the deer antlers that Sue found on a hike with Frankie and my son Mark at Lake Chelan! Meng introduced us to her wonderful Malaysian cooking--cuisine that as Mid-Westerners we'd never known. Hans introduced us to his wonderful intellect and dry humour and, like Meng, had such a multicultural background. We learned much from them and the many others we met at Boeing from different lands. Without us even knowing it at the time, it broadened our horizons so in those heady days of our young adult life. Heck, we were only 25 yrs old when we met!

Hans on Didgeridoo
When Hans and his family moved to Indiana to work at Cummins it wasn't really very far for us to visit each other (a long day trip) which we did on numerous occasions. I remember they came to my parent's cottage in Waupaca several times and we taught Hans and his kids how to water ski. I also remember one winter when they visited us here in Wisconsin and we walked across the frozen expanse of Lake Winnebago in the dead of winter over to a bar I knew in Stockbridge (The Fish Tale Inn) and the girls met us there for lunch. This lake is 35 miles long and 15 miles wide and, with the very strong NW winter wind and subzero ambient temps, the chill factor had to be -20 to -30F! And, don't forget the kind of clothing we had in the 70's, especially Hans coming from southern Indiana that doesn't know such temps. I loaned him some stuff to make the trek but I can assure you that we were the ONLY ones out on the lake that windswept day, much less being on foot! We were young and frisky and this was a challenge that neither of us could resist. I've looked back more than once, though, wondering if this is something I would ever recommend doing.

Rustungs and Meng in Sedona

Oak Creek Gang

Walnut Canyon Cliff Dwellings

We also met several times in our old stomping grounds of Washington State that we loved. It was Hans' idea for us to climb 12,500' Mt. Adams, one of several extinct volcanos in the Cascades. If I remember right, he'd done it once before. I'd done a lot of strenuous backpacking and day hiking but nothing like this (experts wouldn't call it a difficult technical challenge but it certainly was a very physically difficult hike and did take some knowledge, especially about weather conditions, safe glacier trekking, etc.). However, I couldn't resist the challenge, especially if Hans was to be my guide (he was always very knowledgeable and confident in what he did). These were the days before I got heavy into competitive bicycle racing so I wasn't in the best kind of shape like Hans. I'd never done something so difficult as those last 1000 ft, taking one or two steps up these huge rocks, breathing like a turbine engine gasping for O2, resting, only to repeat it again and again. I actually couldn't make the summit by several hundred feet. Hans did. The trip down through butterfly-filled misty clouds at 10,000 ft, with the very bright and flat light, was ethereal. We glissaded thousands of feet at a time, me knowing way back in my mind that a fall without proper arrest (my first encounter with an ice axe) would end up on the rock and boulder piles in the glacier terminus below. When we returned to base camp at timberline my wife Sue was SO pleased to see how absolutely wiped out I was ("You came back looking like a wreck!"). In her eyes I FINALLY had found somebody who could keep up with or surpass me and who seemed as driven as I. I never felt I was that way but that's the way she always thought about me. And I bet it was the same way for Hans.

Hans and grandaughter Zoe
Then Hans moved his family out to Arizona to a new job where he fell in love with hang gliding and later soaring. Arizona was so far away and never on our way anywhere so for many years we kept up with the occasional letter and, of course, via the truly interesting yearly Christmas letters that Hans and Sue always wrote. One day in the early Spring of a year I no longer remember Hans invited me to Arizona. I used one of my frequent flyer tickets (I was traveling a lot in my job then) and came out to a glorious Spring in the desert. We did a lot of hiking and running together I remember. We also went on a hang gliding trip, with Meng and I in the chase vehicle. I always remember from that trip, a couple pieces of trivia: that one had to carry in his vehicle an ice chest with water in Arizona; and to watch out for flash floods in the roads at certain times (ironic to me, in such an arid place). I never saw such nice natural landscaping and houses set into the landscape.

Hans preps the club 2 place to give Mike a ride

expensive see-saw

Hans and Lea on her Boat

And then again, a couple years ago in Spring, Arne and Grete Rustung and I all visited Hans and Meng and their family. I have a lot of nice digital pictures of that time. Of course Hans took me up in the club glider and even let me "fly" it. I remember how difficult a time I had to keep it going straight and without going into undamped oscillations with my poor piloting skills. I also remember how, after dropping off from the towplane, we searched and searched for a thermal, nearly running out of elevation and about ready to return to the airstrip and try again when Hans finally found one and we literally corkscrewed from about 500 ft up to 8000 ft or so faster than a Piper Cub could have climbed. I'd never experienced those kinds of continuous g-forces. It seems we were tilted by about 70 degrees (is that possible?) and I could look sideways out the window toward the ground spinning below. Anyway, I didn't have to reach for the Zip-Lock bags that Hans kept on board for such occasions. During our week together we all sat around and talked a lot about old times and also about recent times. We went out in the boat. We visited Taliesen West, desigined and built by one of my favourite architects Frank Lloyd Wright. Frankie took me for a thrilling ride in his fast sports car and then let me drive it. The Heydrich's were lucky--unlike our family, all their family lived nearby. So, it was a wonderful time renewing old acquaintances and we parted vowing to do it again sometime in the foreseeable future.
I know there are many more things I could remember with some help and given some time. But I guess the most important to me is the overall warm good feeling I have of the 34 years knowing Hans and his fine family.
I'm sure going to miss him and I'll never forget him. He was a kind and good lad.

Mike MacGregor www.mac-paper.com


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