Delta pilot finds note marking ‘apocalyptic, surreal’ pandemic moment. It sat in a plane for more than a year.

In March 2020, Delta pilot Chris Dennis left a note in the aircraft he was parking in a Victorville, California, storage lot, thinking it would be discovered after a two week quarantine. But after being discovered 435 days later, the note is now being called a “time capsule.” 

Dennis said he parked the aircraft in a storage lot along dozens of other planes and said each plane represented hundreds of jobs. He described the scene as “Chilling, apocalyptic, surreal,” in a March 2020 Facebook post. Airlines were in the process of parking passenger planes en masse for storage as travel fell to historic lows.

Dennis wanted to commemorate his emotions and the situation in a note for the next pilot to find.

“Hey pilots – It’s March 23rd and we just arrived from MSP,” Dennis wrote in the note. “Very chilling to see so much of our fleet here in the desert. If you are here to pick it up then the light must be at the end of the tunnel. Amazing how fast it changed. Have a safe flight bringing it out of storage!”

At the time, the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic was just beginning. In the year that followed, schools, restaurants, gym and travel were all put on largely on pause. 

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