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Ep.13 - The Air Mail Man

 
  Original Airdate: December 13, 1973
Writers: Peter L. Dixon & Sarah Dixon
Director: Robert Butler


Prologue:

 
  "The peace and beauty of the land and sky around Waltons Mountain was a source of constant comfort to all of us during those difficult Depression years. Some of the changes that were going on in the world did eventually reflect themselves on our mountain, like the increase in the number of airplanes that spotted the sky. In particular I remember an air mail plane that used our mountain as a landmark. My mother especially liked to wait for the plane to go over, and sometimes watching she'd get the look on her face people have when they watch wild geese winging their way south to warm sunny days."

Synopsis:

  While Olivia waits outside to see the Air Mail man fly over their home the family waits for her inside at the dinner table. Just as she goes inside they hear the plane flying back over their home with engine trouble. They grab lanterns and help the plane land in the meadow. The pilot, Todd Cooper says that a oil line has blown and the plane is leaking gas as well. The Walton's help him to settle in for the night but Grandma is wary of him saying that he is hiding something. The next day with the help of the Walton family he begins to make repairs to his plane. John-Boy discovers that Todd has a wife and that they both have an aerial act and are known as the Flying Coopers.

  Olivia is feeling a little down about her ordinary life. She envies the freedom the pilot must feel when he's flying up with the clouds. While Todd repairs his plane she climbs into the pilot seat and pretends what it must be like to fly above the clouds. It is her birthday and the children bring her breakfast in bed. They buy chocolate to make icing for her cake. Ike gives Olivia a tortoise shell hair comb. John has made her a swivelling full length mirror. Meanwhile, Todd's wife Sue has tracked him down and confronts him about their baby that she is expecting. They has previously had a huge argument and he had stormed off. He doesn't want to be tied down. He tells John that he feels trapped but he also knows that he loves his wife. After a chance to reflect on his feelings and seeing the love that the Walton family has for each other he knows that he must embrace his wife and child. John-Boy realizes too late that his mother would like to go on an air-plane ride that he could have booked for her in Charlottesville, instead he reads her a poem about the beauty of simple, common things. Jason sings a birthday song he wrote for her and Todd, the pilot offers her the plane ride she desires before carrying on his way.

Epilogue:

 
  "Today great passenger planes plough through those skies above the Virginia mountains. Last year one of them brought my mother to see us in California where I now live. We're expecting her again soon, and no doubt our thoughts and our memories will return to those early times when that era we called "depressed" was so very, very good."

Episode Notes and Interesting Facts:

 
 
  • Michael Glasner would go on to star a few years later in Starsky & Hutch.

Additional Cast:

 
 

Guest Stars: Michael Glaser (Todd Cooper), Julie Cobb (Sue Cooper) with: Joe Conley (Ike Godsey)



 

Music from this episode:

   
Theme before John-Boy reads to Olivia for her birthday
Jason sings a personal birthday song for Olivia's birthday
Theme when Olivia goes for a plane ride

 


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