No Fear of Flying, the life story of ex-Kāpiti resident Bill Clague, features encounters with legendary PM Robert Muldoon among many other adventures — and an enthusiastic group of locals helped launch the book at the Paraparaumu Library recently.
Bill was accompanied by his wife Leslie, formerly Kāpiti’s District Librarian, and the evening was hosted by Friends of the Kāpiti Coast District Libraries.
Friends of the Library president Janet Secker chaired the session and between readings quizzed Bill on aspects of his life. Well-known broadcaster Peter Fry read three excerpts from the book, covering incidents in Bill’s life. These include:
- being washed off his yacht near East Cape and his fortuitous rescue by a Singaporean container ship
- acting as a courier for the Australian Security Intelligence Service delivering money and documents in Asia during the cold war and meeting Cliff Richard in Jakarta
- Setting up the Continental Airlines operation in New Zealand and a subsequent run-in with prime minister Rob Muldoon.
The launch was enjoyed by the enthusiastic audience and a number of people bought signed copies of the book,which also details other perilous voyages made by Bill and friends (see pic below).
These days Bill lives in Turangi and enjoys trout fishing, but over the past 68 years he has packed in an amazing range of jobs, experiences and activities.
He’s lived in seven countries and, amongst other things, has been an airline executive, professional hunter, intelligence courier, farmer, power company CEO and lobbyist.
Mountain climbing, tramping, butterfly collecting and yachting are among his interests. The book is a fascinating account of a modern Renaissance man and mixes the remarkable story of the ups and downs of his professional and personal life with perceptive observations of people, businesses, places and cultures.