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Super senior Regional Airline pilots

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Well-known member
Oct 12, 2004
Hi all, quick question to settle a debate: which Regional/Commuter Airline has been around the longest?

My guess was Piedmont, which started out as the original Henson Airways back in '73? My good buddy LowlyPropDrvr can clear that up, eh?

Anyway, I've heard about Comair pilots hired back in '79 who are still there. I think Chautauqua was around back then too... what is the seniormost CHQ pilot's DOH?

And finally, what is the reason that most of these senior folks stay? QOL? or some event that prevented them from moving on?

Thanks for any replies.
Are you asking which one has been around longest or which one has the most senior pilots? If I had to guess I'd say as a whole, Comair and Eagle have more "super senior" guys than any other regional. Whoever has the #1 most senior guy I have no idea.
If I had to guess, I'd say mesaba has been around the longest. As far as the most senior pilots...probable AE.

Most probably stay because of QOL. When you make 100K/year, and get the exact schedule you want, it is hard to justify leaving, taking a pay cut, being on reserve, and risk getting furloughed.

Just my $0.02
I don't think Eagle has the most senior... I believe they started up in '84.

Mesaba... 60 years?? Wow!! I had no clue. So when was the most senior guy hired?
60+ years and an excellent safety record. No, I don't work there, but I have a lot of respect for them.
Yes, Mesaba is the oldest continually operated "regional". The most senior pilot there is an early 81 hire. At last count, Mesaba had 5 over age 60 guys still on the list (not #1 on the list either) As for somewhere like Piedmont, wasn't the original one merged in with what has become US Air (along with numerous others such as Allegheney, Pacific Southwest Airlines, Mohawk, America West, ect.)
June of 1979 hire at ASA
11 piedmont captains have been there over 30 years, with the longest being 33.

Out of 212 Capts on the seniority list, 105 have been there longer than 20 years, and 164 being there longer than 10 years.

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