Jul 072014
 

As a humble tribute for MH370, missing now for 4 months, let’s reflect back on the images of the flight service of this Grand Ole’ Lady. I am an aviation enthusiast. So, I forthrightly share my passion with you for these tribute photos of missing MH370’s Boeing 777-200ER airliner, Registration Number 9M-MRO. This Grand Ole’ Lady, remarkably lost without a trace these past 4 months, was the 404th Boeing 777 series airliner ever built.

The aviation artistry of these images, taken by aviation photographers around the world prior to the MH370 tragedy, showcase the extraordinary flight asset of this digital-age aviation marvel that has suddenly disappeared from our sky early morning on March 8, 2014.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared four months ago with 239 people on board. Extensive search efforts have failed to find the missing aircraft while family members are still holding onto hope for their loved ones’ return.

Dating as far back as October 5, 2004, to February 28, 2014, just a few prior weeks leading up to the March 8th MH370 safety incident, these photos celebrate over a decade of service of Malaysia Airlines’ Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO asset.

Please enjoy these remarkable images of the Grand Ole’ Lady, for they are meant to pay tribute to the lifespan of this marvelous airliner. Additional tribute is extended to the gifted photographers appropriately credited herein, along with their impressions of the Grand Ole’ Lady, as they displayed their passions for photography with this great airliner – now enshrined forever in international aviation safety and security history.

Transposed herein are narratives and images, courtesy of Michael Raisch Studios, for broader collectors of aircraft photography and for airlines and aviation enthusiasts across LinkedIn. They have been provided by photographers across the globe, as tribute to the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO. Since March 27, Michael Raisch Studios “have compiled their stories to give a personal glimpse into aviation photography, ‘plane-spotting‘, and especially the Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO flights provided throughout the world.”

As always, our thoughts and prayers go out to the MH370 crew, passengers, and their families and friends, undergoing deepest grief in facing this international aviation tragedy for four months now. May peace be with you, as we continue to move forward in search for MH370.

For now, we join you in honor of the Grand Ole’ Lady, Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO, operated as Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, in all of her breathtaking and stunning images, as she performed her longstanding duty and exemplary service for the international flying public.

October 5, 2004 – Vienna, Austria

Photo Credit: Rob Boyes, 2004 Vienna International Airport

“I flew into Vienna International from London Heathrow on an Airbus A319-131 G-EUOD. I had a window seat and shot the (Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO), as we were taxing to the stand.

“It has only been through your communication that I realize the coincidence.”

September 21, 2005 – Frankfurt, Germany

Photo Credit: Mario Aurich

“Until today, I didn’t know that one of my aviation pictures shows (the missing Boeing 777-200ER Registration Number) 9M-MRO. But, you’re right. So to be honest, nothing changed. It’s a tragedy …”

June 9, 2009 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Photo Credit: Norman Yusof

“Glad that there are people out there, (who have) deep feelings (about) what happened to MH370, as it has impacted me much …

“They lost contact with MH370 to Beijing … and from then on… a buzz of calls and ‘WhatsApp‘ messages (came) through my (smart)phone. Then several stories cropped up, giving hopes and dashing hopes.

“Remembering that day (March 8, 2014) and the latest official information that we had, gave me chills up the spine, as (the missing Boeing 777-200ER Registration Number) 9M-MRO was still flying, alone, somewhere in the loneliest place on this planet, far south (into) the Indian Ocean.

“I was on an assignment for an aviation agency to capture aircraft movements around Kuala Lumpur International Airport. The Boeing B777 aircraft has this unique and very (elegant) entrance style to the runway for lining up. Thus, I had several (photo) shots of 9M-MRO that day, lining up for takeoff from runway 32R.

I’ll say a little prayer in my heart that they’ll find 9M-MRO soon, find out what actually happened. I prayed for the souls on-board, when I look at my photographs of 9M-MRO.”

October 10, 2009 – Melbourne, Australia

Photo Credit: Dennis McGroarty

“I took this photo a few years ago and wondered where all the people on it were going.

“But for, the people on Flight MH370, it is a very sad end. (As) the mystery deepens, (there is) so much misinformation about what happened to the (missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO).

“Hope it is found soon.

“It appears to be in the deepest part of The Indian Ocean.

“So, the relatives of those on board might never get closure.”

February 7, 2010 – Rome, Italy

Photo Credit: Riccardo Malpic Galassi

“Malaysia Airlines used to have a daily flight from Kuala Lumpur to Roma Fiumicino (Rome). The service was cancelled, something like one or two years ago, after a very long and successful history. It was MH14 / MH15. The incoming flight arrived to Roma Fiumicino (Rome) around 6 am and departed back to Kuala Lumpur around lunch time.

“(My photograph of the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO) was a typical catch of my ‘plane-spotting‘ (on) early morning Sundays.

“A nice photographic delivery on a beautiful aircraft at the best possible sunrise light.

“A 6 am arrival was not really convenient (for ‘plane-spotting’) during winter, or when you are not strong enough to wake up at 4 am on Sundays.

“(Typically) the (airliner’s) take-off was less photographed, because of (photo shooting in) the midday bad and hard light.

“So, in the end, a picture of the Malaysia (Airlines Boeing) 777 was not that common here in Rome.

“After learning about MH370, I felt curious about (airliner’s signature registration) 9M-MRO and started wondering, if I had a picture of (the airliner). Surprisingly, I had (one), and it was taken during takeoff, with a horrible midday light. I usually don’t even photo shoot at that time of the day. All my fellow ‘plane-spotters‘, who were with me that day, don’t have this picture (of 9M-MRO in their aircraft photo portfolios). It seems that I was the only one shooting (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO that day in February 2010) …

“This picture had a really strong impact on me. I have a kind of friendship with the aircraft I photograph. So, it was like I am missing a friend. Moreover, all those lives lost on it made it all way more sad.”

June 27, 2010 – Rome, Italy

Photo Credit: Dan Miclea

“As for what I felt and where I was when I heard the news? I was at home on Facebook when a friend posted a link. And, I immediately thought of Air France flight 447 that crashed into the Atlantic Ocean. It sounded exactly the same, airliner disappears off the radar over water..

“As for the picture I took, I didn’t realize at first that I even took a picture of that plane, until I looked at the registration (9M-MRO) again. I then searched my photos on airliners, as (the registration) 9M-MRO sounded very familiar.

“(Turning now to the) story of the picture, nothing special (really). I had just landed in Rome from Toronto, and got off the plane. We were taken by a bus to the terminal and I saw the giant Boeing 777-200ER taxing.

“So, I decided to snap a photo, and then I never thought about it again, until (upon hearing about MH370, as the story broke internationally) I realized that I had taken a photo four years ago of the same plane that went missing …

“Almost all aviation photographers have thousands upon thousands of photos, out of which a few photos make people go “wow!“ This picture wasn’t a “wow“ shot by any means, but for me at least, it’s a huge “wow“ now. To have it in my collection is something.

“I would like to say that my condolences go out to everyone who was on board and their families.

“Hopefully, we all find out what happened.”

August 10, 2010 – Perth, Australia

Photo Credit: Ignatius ‘Iggy’ Kwee

“The photo was taken in Perth Western Australia. It was taken back in August of 2010. The moment I saw those images that I took of the plane (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO), I was feeling shock and glad at the same time. Because, I never believed that plane is now gone. (I am pleased) I have in my personal collection a copy of the plane …

“When the news of the missing flight first came to light in the early morning of March 8th, I was with my family meetings with my two kids in one of the family homes.

“I was actively involved with my mates, whom are all aviation ‘plane-spotters’ through a … chat group that we created for our little group….Then, (the Boeing 777-200ER plane incident) went serious, as it turned out, (that the plane was) still missing after news about it landing on an airport in Nanjing was a fake. My heart started pounding hard. I just couldn’t believe my eyes and ears that a Malaysian plane, furthermore a triple seven, (went) missing.

“It’s just sad really, and being a Malaysian myself, I might even have had a ride on that similar aircraft, once upon a time ago, flying from Kuala Lumpur to Perth, back in the days before Airasia X came to this part of the world.

“The Triple seven is a joy to fly in. It’s graceful with its huge twin engines, feeling (so) robust in the air. The Triple seven is (also) beautiful to photograph in action with all the flaps down, (and) the triple landing gear bogeys.

“Now having learn (that) this is the first total airframe (loss) and lives lost of a Triple Seven in a crash, it’s just (so) unbelievable in this modern aviation world.”

December 18, 2010 – Sydney, Australia

Photo Credit: Seth Jaworski

“I haven’t photographed the Malaysia (Airlines Boeing) 777 in Sydney very often.

“But, I am glad to have captured this image of her approaching Runway 25 late on a summer afternoon to remember her by.

“My sincere condolences to all those affected by this accident.”

January 30, 2011 – Rome, Italy

Photo Credit: Lorenzo Giacobbo

“When I took this photo, it was a cloudy day with some heavy rain showers.

“As the (Boeing 777-200ER) 9M-MRO took off, after one of the showers, the cloudy sky created (this unique) light (on the airliner).

“This photo is one of the most beautiful I’ve ever taken.

“Right now, I’m just hoping that the (MH370) wreckage will be found fast.”

March 27, 2011 – Shanghai, China

Photo Credit: Jimmy LWH

“Most of the times it was just a normal day for us. When I have time and the weather is good, I go ‘plane-spotting‘. Yes, sometimes there comes by a special painted aircraft.

“Or, there’s a delivery flight from Toulouse or Seattle or somewhere else.

“But most of them are just regular flights. seven weekly flights, same aircraft type, same landing runway …

“Of course, when there’s a plane crash or the retirement of a plane, I will think, oh, I’ve seen this one, and now it won’t be flying anymore.”

April 8, 2011 – Melbourne, Australia

Photo Credit: Peter Hough

“I am a retired pensioner and former private pilot, and I live in a suburb of Melbourne. My hobby is photography, primarily aircraft.

“On a visit to Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport in April 2011, I was taking photos of lots of aircraft, including (the missing Boeing 777-200ER Registration Number) 9H-MRO.

“At the time of the disappearance, I was in the hospital recovering from cancer surgery.

“I spent 18 days in the hospital, and gave no thought to the fact that I may have photographed the aircraft involved in flight MH370.

“It was not until I was home again, and received a ‘Favorite’ flag from a Flickr member that I realized the significance of my photo.”

June 28, 2011 – Johannesburg, South Africa

Photo Credit: Hansueli Krapf

“… I am a contributor to Wikimedia for many years, and as I spend a lot of time on airports, I started one day with (the interest of) aircraft-spotting, while waiting for my flights.

“That has developed more and more. And sometimes, when I am back to Switzerland – my home country – I also take aircraft pictures around Zurich International Airport …

“The picture of (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO I took (in June 2011) is while I waiting for my flight back to Switzerland at Johannesburg airport in South Africa. (The missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO is one out of a minimum of four aircraft, I have spotted, which crashed in the meantime.

“(As an aside), one of the most famous ones was Korean Airlines 007, which was shot down by the Soviet Air Force over Sakhalin Island. I photographed that one in Honolulu in 1981.”


January 23, 2012 – Istanbul, Turkey

Photo Credit: Captain Ercan Karakas

“I’m an Airline Captain. I’m also a ‘plane-spotter‘.

“I love to watch and photograph the take-offs of heavy aircraft. I know they are not metal, flying birds, and that they connects thousands of people on a journey to happiness.

“Now one of them is missing, full of stories, (and now the) only (things) left behind (are) some photographs …

“In remembrance for those on-board.”

June 6, 2012 – Istanbul, Turkey

Photo Credit: Andrew Whitaker

“… I was very pleased to get an image of the aircraft and I still think it was one of the best aircraft I saw in Istanbul.

“When I heard the news (about MH370), I was deeply saddened, as I was in southeast Asia in 2013.

And, I flew on two Boeing 777s. I heard the registration (number 9M-MRO of the missing airliner). I wasn’t sure, but I had a feeling. It could be the aircraft I had seen (back in June 2012 in Instanbul). I checked my Flickr.

“And, I was shocked.

“Suddenly my great feeling of seeing (that I had actually photographed (the missing Boeing 777-200ER Registration, Number 9M-MRO).

“(Then, my great feeling of concern that) this airliner turned to deep sadness, (and) that this aircraft has been lost with nearly 200 passengers …

“… I now see the image as a memorial to all those who have been lost.”

June 16, 2012 – Frankfurt, Germany

Photo Credit: Stephan Kruse

“I took the image, while working on an early shift, as an Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) mechanic at Frankfurt International Airport.

“It was a sunny morning and for the first time in this week (back in June 2012 in Frankfurt) the sun came out and offered a nice photo opportunity after days of dull weather.

“I had this picture on my hard-drive for quite some time prior to publishing it. Because to me, it seemed to be not good enough. One day, I started editing old pictures, and I came across (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO. And, I (immediately) figured out that the result was worth the work.

“My thoughts go to the families of the victims and everybody else involved in this flight — From the mechanics to the crew and all ground stations (employees).”

June 22, 2012 – Los Angeles, California USA

Photo Credit: Justin Lake

“LAX is my favorite airport, as it has the most variety of heavy aircraft and operators …

“When I saw the news about MH370 and that it was a 777, I immediately remembered that I had taken photos of Malaysia Airlines 777s in the past … and, ‘lo and behold’, I did have some photos of (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO from June 22, 2012.

“When I saw that I did, indeed, have some shots of this plane, it sent some shivers up my spine.

“While the (MH370) event itself was terrible and tragic, I was glad to have photographed this airplane while it was still operating.

“I feel grateful to have photographed that plane on that day.”



May 5, 2013 – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Photo Credit: Berhard Ebner

“We wanted to wake up early in the morning to catch the most long haul flights. It was a beautiful sunrise at this day, as you can see on the picture, and a little bit foggy. Perfect for catching the early birds (take-off and land).

“The first plane which we caught was the now missing Triple 7 9M-MRO. I was so happy to have this one spotted, because it was my first Malaysian, and until today, the loneliest.

“I read a lot in Facebook about the missing (Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO). Then, I remembered that I’ve caught a Malaysian … it was the same, as (the one that has gone) missing. I was so surprised about this and (I still) can’t really believed it. They (Malaysia Airlines) have 105 planes, 15 Boeing 777-200s, and I caught exactly this one.

“I don’t know what I really should say now (about the MH370 tragedy). I felt sad and wrote to my Polish friend that we have (photographed) the plane. He was (upon hearing) at that moment really surprised too.”


October 16, 2013 – Los Angeles, California USA

Photo Credit: Gunnar Kullenberg

“(Here’s) My Encounter with Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200, 9M–MRO.

“When I took my picture(s) of Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200, 9M–MRO – I didn’t think much of it, other than that it was a beautiful Fall day here in Southern California …

“Earlier this spring of 2014, I learned that Malaysia Airlines would quit flying to Los Angeles altogether, and with that eliminate all flights to the U.S. So, I decided to pay a little extra attention to Malaysia Airlines …

“A couple of days later, I saw on the news, that a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER was missing.

“I wondered if I might have a shot of this particular aircraft, and a quick search on “9M-MRO” on my computer revealed that I did … that discovery created a strange feeling.

“It was soon reported that transponders had been turned off, not long after departure, followed by a drastic course change. This news, plus information to the effect that the plane had kept on flying well into the early morning, turned the story into a genuine mystery.

“The thought of what the passengers might have experienced is horrifying and haunting …

“Now there are only a day or two left before the “pings” from the “black boxes” go silent and for the sake of friends and relatives of those on-board, I hope the truth about the aircraft’s fate is uncovered and soon …”

January 12, 2014 – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Photo Credit: Marlon Mills

“That was the second time that I took a photo of a crashed airliner. First it was the crashed National Jumbo at Bagram and now the Malaysia Airlines B777-200. It is an unreal and very incredible feeling for me.

“I heard about the crash, when I was at school. I just thought “Oh no. No crash again!”. It is very spooky.

Because, I think nearly 20% of all aircraft I spotted are crashed or they had some accidents, for example, an emergency landing.

I took that photo of the (missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO nearly 2 months before (the March 8) crashing, on the January 12, 2014 at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.

“It is nearly like a bad dream!”

January 30, 2014 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Photo Credit: Norman MD Yusof

“One of my last few shots of (the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number) 9M-MRO, captured in the morning of January, 30th, 2014.

“I published this in my Facebook wall, the day the Prime Minister of Malaysia announced that flight MH370 has ended somewhere in southern part of Indian Ocean, the loneliest place on this planet. I called this photo “Oscar, you’re ‘home’ …”

February 28, 2014, Los Angeles, California, USA, the missing Boeing 777-200ER, Registration Number 9M-MRO, Last Flight to the US

Photo Credit: JB Barcenas

“I was in the new Tom Bradley Terminal at LAX and walking by, as I snapped my image (of the missing Boeing 777-200ER).

Then, I got to talk to the captain to ask about flight training and special flying opportunities. I don’t remember the Captain’s name, but I don’t think it was the flight crew on MH370.

“The image was taken on February 28, 2014 after it de-planed …. March 8 was the day I uploaded this picture … not knowing at that time it was 9M-MRO, which disappeared.

“… In remembrance for those on-board.”

__________

“This piece has been produced as a non-profit tribute to all of the lives, who are missing and those who remain forever changed by this tragic event.”

© Raisch Studios 2014

“All Images have been cleared for usage from the participating photographers. They hold and retain the rights to their images.”

Contact and inquire: michael_raisch@yahoo.com

@RaischStudios on Twitter

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