Embattled Boeing Taps Ghost of Howard Hughes to Design, Pilot 737 Replacement
CHICAGO, IL - “There’s only one man we considered for the job;” announced Boeing Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg, “Howard Hughes may have died over 40 years ago, but he’s still the best we’ve got.” As the aerospace and defense firm attempts to recover from two high-profile crashes that has grounded thousands of flights worldwide, bringing back a titan of the industry to helm the development for the 737 Max aircraft is seen by some as a bold move.
Mr. Hughes, who dominated aviation from biplanes to the jet era, is no stranger to neither controversy, publicity, nor plane crashes, Mr. Muilenburg assures investors that despite having died in the 1970s after famously battling Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and injuries from various aviation accidents, “Mr. Hughes’ demanding innovation makes him a natural choice to lead the high-visibility project of developing, launching, and ultimately piloting the 737’s replacements.” Boeing believes that Hughes’ myriad ties throughout the industry do not pose any conflicts of interest, particularly since his airline, Trans World Airlines, Inc., filled for bankruptcy over a quarter-century ago and long after he himself was declared dead in his Las Vegas Penthouse.
Although still very early in the design stage, Mr. Hughes’ initial plans reportedly call for the new 737s to be colossal, all-wooden hulls with wingspans longer than football fields; some detractors have nicknamed it the Pine Pigeon.