A perspective of Santa Maria

An airport has changed the life of an island, made it grow into the first world. It even took a calling letter to get in there. But as World War II ended and aviation technology changed, it was lost again in the middle of the Atlantic. (1)

It is not possible to talk about Santa Maria Island in recent decades without talking about the airport. Having the 2nd largest runway in the Azores (the first is located at the base of Lajes, Terceira island), Santa Maria played a major role in World War II.

However, with the end of the war and the increased autonomy of airplanes, the importance of the airport decreased dramatically.

There are currently only brief records of the bustling activity of Santa Maria. But the island has not lost its glamor!

Air control of flights between Europe and America is still important, it receives flights from local airline SATA and stopovers of private flights, as well as large cargo planes.

Hélio Rebelo, the author of this photographic report, joins two of his advantages as a person: his love for photography and the fact that he works at the airport.

The result is a huge photographic collection of the airport, its dynamics, its aircrafts and its immersion in the colors of Santa Maria (especially when nights fall on the island). (2)

Due to the great evolution of aircraft, the images of Helio Rebelo will soon assume historical and reference value. In a few years it will be possible to remember the airport at the beginning of the 21st century through his work.

(1) Source: sapo.pt

(2) An extensive collection of Hélio Rebelo can be found here.


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