Americans turn plane wrecks into homes

After a house fire, Ussery came up with the idea of ​​​​starting a new life in the cabin of an old Boeing 727 on his property.

In 1995, following the idea of ​​his brother-in-law, an air traffic controller, Jo Ann Ussery, a beautician in Benoit, Mississippi, purchased and transported the wrecked Boeing 727 back to the land she owned. own, then spent 6 months renovating it into a home.

At a cost of $30,000 (about $60,000 today), she completed a new 1,400-square-foot “home” that was fully furnished, including three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a hot tub in the cockpit. .

Ussery lived in the plane for many years. In 1999, she took this special “house” to a nearby property for display, but the plane fell from the truck during transportation and was so damaged that it could not be repaired.

Ussery’s impeccable project execution has inspired many Americans to turn plane wrecks into homes. Bruce Campbell, an electrical engineer with a private pilot’s license, was amazed to hear her story on the radio.

“I was driving home at the time, and to my surprise I didn’t lose control because I was so focused on Ussery’s story. The next morning, I immediately called her,” Campbell recalls.

Ussery's three grandchildren play in the bathtub in the cockpit.  Photo: Sun.

Ussery’s three grandchildren play in the bathtub in the cockpit. Photo: Sun.

Campbell later turned a Boeing 727 into his home in the woods of Hillsboro, Oregon, and lives there to this day. “Now I would never choose to live in a normal house,” he said.

He spent a total of $220,000 (about $380,000 today), of which about half was on Olympic Airways Boeing in Greece to turn it into a home.

Campbell spent several years converting the “old and rough” plane into a livable home, with a sofa-cum-bed and homemade shower from plastic pipes.

In the cold winter, Campbell often leaves the plane house, moving to Miyazaki, southern Japan, where he owns a small apartment. He even came close to buying a second Boeing in Japan, but the project had to be halted because the airline decided to use the plane longer.

In the summer, he regularly welcomes guests, providing free accommodation on the plane. He also organizes major public events with fairgrounds. “There are arcades, big concerts in the woods, performers on the right, dancing guests in the front and back. The space is small but very enjoyable,” Campbell said.

Electrical engineer Bruce Campbell inside is a Boeing 727 in Oregon in 2014. Photo: Reuters.

Electrical engineer Bruce Campbell inside is a Boeing 727 in Oregon in 2014. Photo: Reuters.

Meanwhile, Joe Axline of Brookshire, Texas, even stayed in two side-by-side planes, the MD-80 and DC-8, for over a decade.

Axline is planning to convert the DC-8 into a movie theater and music room. He called his plan “Project Freedom”.

“I spent less than $250,000 on the whole project, because I own the land and build my own water supply and drainage system,” Axline revealed. “The only thing left is electricity.”

He also took his children to live for many years. “Living in an ordinary house in the US wastes a lot of space. On the plane, my bedroom is 17 square meters, has two TVs and lots of space for travel. Living room is fine, dining room for four.” Axline said.

Axline said many drivers passing by a nearby road stopped out of curiosity about his “airplane house”. “Almost everyone I meet I wave and invite them to visit if they have time.”

Joe Axline's flying house in Brookshire, Texas, USA.  Photo: CNN.

“Airplane house” of Mr. Joe Axline in Brookshire, Texas, USA. Photo: CNN.

Billionaire and director Howard Hughes also spent a large amount to remodel the Boeing 307 into an “apartment”. American country singer Red Land lived for decades in the wreckage of a DC-8.

However, Axline said that not everyone can give up life in ordinary houses to move to live entirely in planes. “It takes preparation, passion and a desire to do this, because there will be problems that can discourage you,” he says.

This also seems to be the reason some of Campbell’s friends have been interested in this lifestyle for many years, but no one has followed suit.

“I sent them detailed and clear instructions for each step, but it didn’t give them any more motivation,” he said. “But don’t be discouraged, don’t let anyone shake your trust. Get all the logistics in place, and get to work.”

Duc Trung (Theo CNN)

Leave a Comment