Milton author Kevin Walsh will give a talk this evening about his new book called 57 Balloons. His story happened in 1984 when he was 24 years old. At the time, he was a licensed parachute rigger who fastened himself to 57 helium-filled balloons and soared one mile into the sky at dawn on New Year’s Day. He says he took the unusual flight to celebrate his gratitude for living in a free world. He went aloft at Minuteman Airfield in Stow, MA to call attention to the positive aspects of living in 1984 – a year described in foreboding terms in George Orwell’s novel by the same name.
Walsh said he and 9 friends stayed up all night that New Year’s Eve, attaching the nine tiers of five to seven helium-filled water balloons to create the craft. Walsh, who graduated from Boston College High School and Bowdoin College with a major in Spanish, said he had two messages to deliver. One was that life is not as dismal as in Orwell’s famous book and the other is that we hope it doesn’t get that way. There was a Federal Aviation Administration investigation which followed, but instead of telling you the whole story, we will let Mr. Walsh do so! Please come and join us at this fascinating program, where his books will also be available for sale. This event is kindly sponsored by the Friends of the Milton Public Library and is appropriate for all ages.