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sahd

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I looked at the launch logs and see that they came out once in 2008 and flew with us at the NCR north site, but don't know them. Someone in the club may. I just really hope he's hiding somewhere in the neighborhood thinking he's in trouble for letting the balloon go. The family will be in my prays either way.

Ron
 

MaxQ

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r1dermon

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now they're saying that a deputy in FT collins saw a black box fall from the bottom of the balloon. doesn't look too good for this kid.
 

bobkrech

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What were the parents thinking. This project was not cooked up by a 6 year old. Serious money was spent on this as a rough calculation says the baloon held ~1500 cubic feet of helium. Not cheap nor something a 6 year old can get, not to mention the price of the baloon itself. If it's not a hoax, this is clearly a case where the parents should be prosecuted for child endangerment or worse. This was totally irresponsible.

Bob
 

shrox

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What were the parents thinking. This project was not cooked up by a 6 year old. Serious money was spent on this as a rough calculation says the baloon held ~1500 cubic feet of helium. Not cheap nor something a 6 year old can get, not to mention the price of the baloon itself. If it's not a hoax, this is clearly a case where the parents should be prosecuted for child endangerment or worse. This was totally irresponsible.

Bob
Nothing happened, the kid is fine.
 

powderburner

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I have a boss I'd sorta like to hook up to that balloon.

And a brother-in-law.

And........
 

shrox

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I kind of surprised that no one did the math to see that a balloon of that size could not lift an average six year old boy as described in the stories. Realizing that the balloon could not carry the boy would have saved alot of worry and searching in the wrong places.
 

JStarStar

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I kind of surprised that no one did the math to see that a balloon of that size could not lift an average six year old boy as described in the stories. Realizing that the balloon could not carry the boy would have saved alot of worry and searching in the wrong places.
The various balloon guys they interviewed on CNN seemed skeptical, but they were hedging, saying it "seemed unlikely" the balloon could lift a kid.
 

kelltym88

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I kind of surprised that no one did the math to see that a balloon of that size could not lift an average six year old boy as described in the stories. Realizing that the balloon could not carry the boy would have saved alot of worry and searching in the wrong places.
Yes, but we are at the mercy of the media who is guilty of sensationalism... anything for a story
 

jadebox

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I kind of surprised that no one did the math to see that a balloon of that size could not lift an average six year old boy as described in the stories. Realizing that the balloon could not carry the boy would have saved alot of worry and searching in the wrong places.
Not to mention that it is difficult to imagine how the child could untie the balloon then get into it (or get into it then untie it).

-- Roger
 

AKPilot

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This family also took part in the reality show "Wife Swap". Enough said!
 

JStarStar

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And now, in an obviously staged CNN interview, the kid says to dad, "You said we did it for a show."

Daddy in a big heap-a trouble.

:y::y::y:
 

luke strawwalker

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I kind of surprised that no one did the math to see that a balloon of that size could not lift an average six year old boy as described in the stories. Realizing that the balloon could not carry the boy would have saved alot of worry and searching in the wrong places.
Yeah, I was wondering that too...

Geez louise... Doesn't ANYBODY watch Mythbusters?? :D:D

They decided to inflate a bunch of party balloons to see how many would be required to lift a 3-4 year old, IIRC (the little girl was one of the producer's kids IIRC who volunteered for the project). They heliumed up something like 3,000 balloons in an airplane hangar, literally a ball of balloons like 100 feet across, and STILL just barely achieved neutral bouyancy... getting up to 9,000 feet in altitude with a 6 year old aboard would take WAY more lift than that balloon was capable of!

Geez, people, read a little science and do a little math for pity's sake! OL JR :)
 

luke strawwalker

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And now, in an obviously staged CNN interview, the kid says to dad, "You said we did it for a show."

Daddy in a big heap-a trouble.

:y::y::y:
Yeah, I noticed that too...

"Remember-- Kids say the darndest things!!!" (learned that lesson recently when my four year old chided mommy for not doing the dishes after hearing me gripe about it before mommy got home!)

Hope they charge him for the helicopter time, fuel, wages of the searchers (police/firemen) and all that stuff like they did that 'runaway bride' down in Alabama or whereever it was a few years ago... Rediculous to waste public resources on attention hungry people...

After watching the vid, I've got one thing to say-- THANK GOD these kids aren't on my schoolbus... I bet mommy and daddy have never told them NO once in their life, and they'll fly into a million pieces if anybody else ever did either, and mom and dad would have a conniption fit about anybody else telling them to sit down and do right... Just my first impression anyway-- I might be wrong, but I kinda doubt it... Just seem the type...

Oh well, life goes on... OL JR :)
 

shrox

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And now, in an obviously staged CNN interview, the kid says to dad, "You said we did it for a show."

Daddy in a big heap-a trouble.

:y::y::y:
Maybe the kid meant it was to be used in a show they were planning to do. Although one would think the father would have known enough about balloons to realize his boy could not be on board.
 

Peartree

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Although one would think the father would have known enough about balloons to realize his boy could not be on board.
Especially if daddy had done the math to calculate how many pounds of test equipment he could get onboard.

(Not that we always think logically when we are panicking about our children. I had a friend panic and scream for her husband when her 2-3 year old son fell off the dock and began sinking in the lake. She totally forgot that a) the lake by the dock was only three feet deep, and b) she had been a lifeguard for well over a decade. BTW, the kid was fine. He left for college this year.)
 

RocketT.Coyote

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Any chance that the Gilligan's Island episode involving the raincoat balloon and Kurt Russell was shown on local cable in CO?:roll:
 

jadebox

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Geez, people, read a little science and do a little math for pity's sake! OL JR :)
But, the sheriff said he had a professor tell him that a balloon that size could lift 80 pounds!

In all fairness to the prof though, they told him that it was a 16' diameter balloon or something like that. So the professor was assuming the volume was much larger than it really was.

My back of the napkin calculation says the balloon could lift about 25 pounds and that weight includes the material the balloon was made of as well as the "electrical equipment" the father claims was in it.

It looked like the balloon was about 16 feet in diameter and about four or five feet tall. So, I determined the volume of a 16' sphere - about 2144 cubic feet. The volume of the balloon would be about one-fifth that or about 425 cubic feet. Multiply 425 by .06 to get the lifting capacity in pounds.

If the balloon had carried any significant payload, it would have been deformed by the weight. In the video the family released of the "accidental" launch, it's obvious there's no bulky weight in the balloon.

-- Roger
 
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shrox

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But, the sheriff said he had a professor tell him that a balloon that size could lift 80 pounds!

In all fairness though, they probably told the professor that it was a 16' diameter ballon or something like that so the professor was assuming the volume was much larger than it really was.

-- Roger
16' spherical balloon probably, this one was disk shaped.
 

jadebox

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roger said:
In all fairness though, they probably told the professor that it was a 16' diameter ballon or something like that so the professor was assuming the volume was much larger than it really was.
16' spherical balloon probably, this one was disk shaped.
Ugh ... you caught me before I could correct my spelling. :)

That's what I think. They told the prof that it was a "16-foot diameter balloon" and he did the calculations based on a 16-foot sphere.

BTW, I don't think anything the law enforcement people did was wrong. They had to take the report seriously. But, now they need to go back and figure out what really happened.

Unfortunately, after hearing the sheriff's conference a couple of hours ago, it appears he is in CYA mode. Instead of investingating whether he's been the victim of a hoax, he's going out of his way to ignore the evidence.

-- Roger
 

vcp

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Besides a hefty bill for rescue services, I'd be all for criminal charges for a false police report.

The father absolutely knew how much lift he had, so he absolutely knew that the kid wasn't in it. It was a hoax from the ground up. This kind of moron needs to be stomped on really hard.
 

tibadoe

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It's a shame what some people will do for attention.
 

JAL3

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(Not that we always think logically when we are panicking about our children. I had a friend panic and scream for her husband when her 2-3 year old son fell off the dock and began sinking in the lake. She totally forgot that a) the lake by the dock was only three feet deep, and b) she had been a lifeguard for well over a decade. BTW, the kid was fine. He left for college this year.)
We were discussing just this situation at church last night. The chair of the Admin. Council made the point you did about parents and then told a story on her husband. When he was three, his mother and grandmother were outside of the house talking about problems with the open septic tank. Rebecca (the mom) heard a kerplunk, saw the ripples in the septic tank and could not see Richard. She assumed he had fallen in and dove into the septic tank to retrieve him. Richard was behind a tree and had thrown a rock into the tank. He wanted to know why mommy dove into the smelly tank.
 

JStarStar

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Driving in to work, I caught the tail end of some talk-radio show where the hosts launched into a diatribe, "you can tell by the pictures of the dad and kids holding rockets they're all nuts" then went on to say, "we've got to ban all this loony-toon space-cadet crap, balloons and rockets and all that crap. All those people are nut cases."

I tried to call in to maybe slow down the lynch mob a bit, but as soon as the call-screener figured out I was going to say something other than "yeah man, you betcha, you tell it like it is," they dumped me.

Amazingly, these guys are usually "too much regulation/cut my taxes/states rights/get the government off my back" teabag-style screechers. Now, all of a sudden, they want more government intervention. Of course, just as I was getting out of the car, they had started to blame the whole thing on "liberal permissiveness" and the "culture of entitlement."

:mad:
 
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MarkH

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At least he didn't almost climb into the payload bay of his Dad's high power rocket, right before liftoff. That would not have been good publicity.

Watch the today show interview. Falcon has to leave the camera so he can throw up Then you hear him yak. :eek:
 
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sylvie369

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I'm most amazed by the fact that both the police and the media explicitly say that the father seems sincere right after they show a variety of videos in which he is obviously doing some of the least convincing acting I've ever seen.

I don't have television - got rid of it in January of 2002 - so I don't know what passes for "reality" on TV these days, but the TV news clips I've seen online show a father who is quite obviously performing (for example, in the "accidental launch" video), and who isn't very good at it. Are people _really_ looking at him and thinking he seems sincere? :confused2:

If this doesn't end in arrest complete with some kind of child endangerment charges I'll be very surprised.
 

luke strawwalker

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Driving in to work, I caught the tail end of some talk-radio show where the hosts launched into a diatribe, "you can tell by the pictures of the dad and kids holding rockets they're all nuts" then went on to say, "we've got to ban all this loony-toon space-cadet crap, balloons and rockets and all that crap. All those people are nut cases."

I tried to call in to maybe slow down the lynch mob a bit, but as soon as the call-screener figured out I was going to say something other than "yeah man, you betcha, you tell it like it is," they dumped me.

Amazingly, these guys are usually "too much regulation/cut my taxes/states rights/get the government off my back" teabag-style screechers. Now, all of a sudden, they want more government intervention. Of course, just as I was getting out of the car, they had started to blame the whole thing on "liberal permissiveness" and the "culture of entitlement."

:mad:
What show was this?? Just curious! Some of those guys DEFINITELY talk out of both sides of their face, that's for sure. Personally I think that your "tea-bag screechers" comment was a bit insulting, but hey, you're entitled to your opinion:rolleyes:... I personally want only one thing from "my" government-- LEAVE ME ALONE! I think that sentiment is shared by the VAST majority of the 'tea bag screechers'...

There was more on this story on Yahoo this morning... apparently the authorities ARE investigating whether this was a hoax or not, and definitely have their doubts. Some of the families former associates have come forward (co-workers, tv producers, etc) and told a few anecdotes about reality TV series he was pushing, about 'science detectives' that would have started with him and someone else standing on top of a mountain in black "MATRIX" style outfits getting strafed by a helicopter... the idea was 'shot down' (pun intended:)) :roll: The producer also was sorta involved in the "Wife Swap" show as a 'family friend' and the supposed reason for the wife swap show was to get publicity for his 'reality show' idea. Some other producer was saying that they were developing a project with him but have canned it since all this blew up. Another buddy of his tells how he and some guys went to some LA comedy club and did an act that 'totally bombed' and had 'weird crazy ideas about a reality show where he'd ride a motorcycle into a tornado-- stupid stuff like that'.

Apparently the authorities have some concerns about the kids as well, what with the storm chasing with them in the car, and CPS is planning to interview them all; the police have asked them to wait until they have conducted all the interviews they plan to determine if this 'escapade' was a hoax or not.
I'm not a big fan of CPS; I've seen situations myself where they come down on folks for stuff that's NONE of their business, and yet leave kids in situations where they'd be better off elsewhere, but really, like my wife said, "even the mother must be nuts allowing him to take the kids storm chasing with him". Like I said, if he wants to risk killing himself, that's fine, but risking his kids is just DUMB. Her letting him do it is DUMB too.

They can be as 'off the wall' as they want to, pursue whatever psuedoscience they choose, but they shouldn't endanger their kids... that's just wrong. Even this 'balloon incident' tells me that the guy is messing around with stuff in an unsafe manner, if he didn't know that A) the balloon couldn't lift off with his kid, B) the balloon wasn't securely tethered before he released it, C) he entrusted one of his kids to 'hold the tether', and D) their first phone calls were to the FAA, the TV station, THEN 911. Then he yells at the kid for 'letting go of the tether'.

At first blush I'd say the guy is certifiable, from everything that's come out of this mess.

OL JR:)

PS. The kids were playing in the backyard yesterday and would peek through the fence at the reporters, and one of them stuck his head out long enough to tell the reporters, "Daddy's not talking today-- he's tired of THIS SHOW".

I bet he gets a lot more tired of it before it's done... :shock:

And another thing... in the kid's "rap video" on youtube, they are walking along the railroad tracks... yeah, THAT'S real safe! It's also a violation of the law since it's trespassing on railroad property... just a few more little things that tell me these people don't quite have enough sandwiches for a picnic... We've had SEVERAL incidents in the Houston area over the past few years where kids have lost legs and arms cut off under trains, or killed outright...
 
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