I am proud of this company, of its people and of what they do. At FlightSafety we believe we've helped our customers in their quest for safe, reliable transportation. And in doing that, we've helped save lives as a matter of course. Knowing that makes it fun to go to work every day and helps me to sleep like a baby at night.

In recent years, I became concerned that once I exited the stage - say, maybe a hundred years from now - the company that we've built so carefully and so well could be taken over and parceled out by outsiders. I didn't want that to happen but wasn't sure what to do about it. Fortunately, my good luck held once again. Warren Buffett called.

Although Warren had been sending his pilots to us for training, he and I had never met, so the contact came as a surprise. He wanted to know if I'd be interested in discussing FlightSafety's future. I was.

So one afternoon in late 1996 we met in New York City. We got to know each other over a couple of hamburgers and Cherry Cokes, and I liked what I saw and heard. Warren said he'd like FlightSafety to be a part of Berkshire Hathaway, but he wanted it to remain an independent subsidiary, to continue on its same course of business, and to be run by the same people as before. At the end of the meal - the best burger I'd eaten since selling Little Hawk - we shook hands on the deal, and by the end of December it was done. FlightSafety became a wholly owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, and I could not be more pleased.

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