The part about the control locks for the horizontal stabilizer is NOT true. See my description of the event above.
I'm glad to hear that after all these years. I always wondered how a pilot could overlook something like that, and the control cable explanation makes so much more sense.
The lesson in this is that I read it somewhere, because somebody put it into print. Iyt's been so many years that I can't even remember where I read it. Just goes to show that you can't believe everything you read, not in print OR on the web. Second lesson is that this is how a bunk story like that makes its way into popular folklore.
By the way, I was at the '78 Nationals Boogie and made several jumps from 873 in the week before the crash. The weather was crappy right up until the 4th of July, which was beautiful. Then the meet management decided to extend the boogie one more day into team practice day, to make up for all the lousy days earlier in the week.
(This post was edited by tbrown on Jun 20, 2008, 2:10 PM)