Metaxas and the hydroplane

This is a short (fictional) story about Metaxas from an American magazine for children after WW2, which was retrieved in 2005 by priest John W. Ritenbaugh for a sermon called “Don’t Lose Your Focus!”.

Here is another something that actually happened. There was a man named Metaxas. He was the dictator of Greece right around the time of the beginning of the Second World War. This man was a pilot as well as being a general in the army. He piloted his own plane.

One day somebody asked him if he would like to go out in one of the latest hydroplanes that had been developed. A hydroplane is a plane that takes off on water and lands on water. He said, “Yes, I would like to do that.” So the fellow took him out to the plane. They went up in the plane, and while they were up in the plane the fellow asked the general if he would like to pilot the plane. “Yes,” said the general. “I would like to do that.” And so they flew around for a little while, and then the fellow said, “Would you like to land the plane?” The general said, “Yes. I would like to do that.”

The first mistake Metaxas made was that he headed for the city airport. Here is this fellow thinking, “How do you say to the dictator, without getting your head shot off, that he was making a mistake here?” But he got his courage together, and he told the man, “I think it would be good if you took the plane over to the bay and land it there because we have to land on water.” “Oh, oh, yeah,” replied the dictator. So he took the plane to the bay and made a beautiful landing. He taxied up to the dock, got out of his seat, and the fellow said, “General, that was really a very good landing that you made.” Metaxas said, “Thank you,” turned around, and stepped out into the bay. That really happened. He forgot where he was. He was so obsessed on the immediate.