Colonel Charles (Chuck) Jones, USAF Ret.,
Passenger on Flight 11, the first plane to hit the Twin Towers.

Charles "Chuck" Jones, 48, of Bedford, Mass., was flying to California for business and took this flight several times a month. "Everything was routine, except it wasn't," friend Claude Messamore says.

Jones almost made it into outer space. He was qualified to fly on the space shuttle and was scheduled to fly a mission when the 1987 Challenger explosion indefinitely postponed launches. He graduated from the Air Force Academy and spent 24 years in the Air Force. He had two master's degrees, one in aeronautics and astronautics from MIT, the other in business MBA from California State University. Jones, who was manager of space programs for BAE Systems, leaves a wife. He was an avid skin diver and loved the outdoors.

"Chuck Jones is a hero kind of guy," Messamore says. "He was very friendly, with a great sense of humor, very patriotic. He would've given his life for his country, and he did."

(Article copy from USA Today's website-sue me.)

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Chuck Jones was my cousin. He was one of my heroes.

I jumped for joy for him when I found out he was scheduled to fly on the Shuttle, and I was devastated with disappointment for him when his mission was cancelled.

He was two years younger than I. When we were kids, he was an annoying little bugger who grew into a fine strong man with an amazing sense of purpose and focus. You can see it in his eyes in the picture. When he was in the Air Force Academy, he survived an unwarranted and undeserved accusation of cheating  purely on his own integrity and his determination to be treated justly and have the truth be revealed. Whether or not he knew it, the gauntlet he endured taught me to stick to my guns and stand my ground when I know I'm right.

I will miss him, and I will always be proud that we share family blood.

His life ended suddenly, and I don't know if he knew how much I admired him; my regret is that he may not have. This web page is here so that others will know what a fine man was lost, and a memorial to somebody I wish I could have been.

Always remember that September 11, 2001 was not just a was an abomination.

Saddam Hussein did not kill my cousin.....Osama Bin Laden did. I wish somebody would remember that and act accordingly.

I find no revenge or solace in Bin Laden's death, only closure, and possibly; justice.