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Ben Franklin, D.O. and the Big Dog all Flew Kites

Photo by: Simon Hayter/Getty Images

It was 260 years ago today that Ben Franklin flew a kite during a lightning storm to prove that lightning was a discharge of electricity.  Why Franklin was flying the kite during a storm is still in question. This kite flying episode let me to thinking of the time when Dennis Oliver and I

made a visit to the top of Quincy’s tallest building…the Western Catholic Building at 510 Maine Street.  We have been there several times on the air to fly kites from the top of the building.  The first time was when we worked in the building at 99Q and we were flying this kite with a pizza gift certificate attached to it.  The concept was , if you find the kite the certificate would be yours to redeem for a free pizza.  It was a blustery day up there on the roof that day but we managed to get the kite way up into the sky at which point we cut the string and let it go. It took several directions after that. After broadcasting from the the roof for over an hour we had several people following the progress of the kite. Once it became loose we could  the kite land around 6th and State. From our great vantage point, we could see cars heading for that intersection and some even going the wrong way to get to it. At that point we looked at each other and thought  “My God.  what have we done”. We feared car wrecks and people getting hurt over a free pizza. Thankfully, no one got hurt. Franklin may have found lightning but Dorsey and Oliver almost created their own that day.

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