Orbin "Orbie" Stone

Orbie, the Adams Family Southern connection


Southern Angel graces the Las Cruces sky

Southern Angel flying high

Southern Angel at Elephant Butte

Orbie is from Las Cruces, New Mexico. He is a lifelong resident, having spent all of his too-many-to-count years in the "Land of Enchantment". He is married to Janette Stone who is a native of Las Cruces. Janette retired recently from the public school system in Las Cruces after 20 years service. She spends a good deal of her time these days on a part-time job and helping to organize the Mesilla Valley Balloon Rally which is held in mid-January of each year.
Orbie was introduced to ballooning through Janette's sister, Kay Griffin. The Griffin's were crewing for Bob Woodall and Sam Baxter. Soon, Orbie, Janette, and Kay's other sister Sandra Gardner and her husband "Goober" were hooked, along with their children, Roy and Krista Gardner. They soon called themselves "The Southern Crew" and added Leslie Hennessee, also from Las Cruces.
Orbie bought Southern Angel from Norman Kassinger, Sierra Vista, Arizona in October 1996. He struggled over what name to give his new balloon. Of course all of the Adams Family had no doubt as to what to call this new balloon of the "Southern Crew". Orbie was told that the Adams Family didn't care what he called his new balloon; they were going to call it "Southern Angel". Orbie then acquiesced and officially named the balloon "Southern Angel". He started his flying lessons with Bob Haynes of Las Cruces as his instructor. He completed his Ground School, written FAA test and had completed nine hours of instructed flight time, when the unthinkable happened. As he rode his motorcycle to work early in the morning of April 10,1997, a deer decided he had as much right-of-way as Orbie and the resulting crash accounted for a broken right hand. The deer fared much worse and was the guest of honor at more than a few venison dinners. Orbie has recuperated nicely and is now able to resume flying. It was trying times, but that strong urge to get "up, up and away led him back to the wild blue yonder. He finished all exams and earned his private pilot license on March 8, 1998
Orbie's crew include:
Janette Stone Goober Gardner (Crew Chief) Sandra Gardner
Roy Gardner Lori Gardner Krista Gardner
Reggie Larkin Mike Weber Becky Weber
Renee Weber Chris Weber
Bruce Cox Kaitlyn Cox Joe Contreras
Alex Contrares Amy Contreras Leslie Hennessee
Jeri Forsythe Robert Forsythe Corrie Stone
Khadijah Fielder Randall Bates Lena Bates (Johnson)�

Orbie's personal data include:
Aeronautical License: Private Pilot.
Day Job: Deerslayer and Industrial Maintenance Technician at Lockheed Martin, Johnson Space Center in Las Cruces.
Hobbies: Hot air ballooning, photography and big game hunting (really!)
Best Ballooning Experience: Flying in the 1998 Kodak Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.
Worst Ballooning Experience: The first time Orbie inflated Southern Angel with Sam Baxter as the Instructor Pilot, they encountered a wind shear that sent the balloon rudely into the ground. No injuries occurred, but the experience gave pause for safety considerations.

The Southern Crew is a little shy

The original "Southern Crew"

The Southern Angel Crew

The current "Southern Crew"
Leslie, Renee, Lori, Khadijah
Lena, Krista
Goober, Roy
Bruce, Becky, Chris, Sandra, Joe, Corrie, Larry, Linda, Beverly, Plemon
Janette, Orbin

Southern angel scales the red rocks near Gallup, New Mexico"

You may contact Orbie with any ballooning question at:
e-mail address: stoneo@zianet.com

Click on a pilot's picture to go to that page

Copyright� 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002. Except for educational entities, no reproduction without written permission of The Adams Family Hot Air Balloon Teams is allowed.

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