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Monday, December 03, 2007

Jets Flight Crew Spotlight: Linda 

Posted by Sasha at 4:58 PM ET

Linda Has Designs After Flight Crew Career
By Eric Allen
Senior Managing Editor
NewYorkJets.com

Going to the Meadowlands for Jets games is nothing new for Linda.

“I’ve been coming to games since ’94,” said the Flight Crew rookie. “That was the first game I went to since my family has season tickets, and I’ve been coming to games since I was little.”

The Massapequa, N.Y., native comes from a tight-knit family. Her household is dominated by females — five in all — in addition to the patriarch.

“This just brings us a lot closer," Linda said. "My family has always been Jets fans, so the fact that I’m now a Jets Flight Crew member really brought me in there with Daddy.”

A junior at the Fashion Institute of Technology, Linda is studying interior design. Daddy’s little girl wants to follow in his footsteps once she completes her degree.

“He is a kitchen and bath designer, so I have been working with him,” she said. “I think that’s what I’m going to focus on once I graduate in two years.”

Her father owns North Shore Cabinetry, a high-end custom kitchen and bathroom design firm. Linda, who enjoys living at home, rides the Long Island Railroad into the city each day to the Fashion Institute.

“The classes are really small. The biggest class has like 15 kids in it and there are only 50 kids in my program,” she said. “FIT is a big school but each program is very tiny and individualized.”

So that means a lot of field trips. The students study the concepts of many buildings, including restaurants and design stores.

“We see what materials are being used just to get inspiration and ideas,” she said.

Five years ago, Linda was a student at the Marianne Anderson School of Dance. Her teacher then was Denise Garvey and now Garvey is the Jets’ choreographer.

“I teach [jazz and tap] at the studio I used to go to, so my boss called me to see if I wanted to go audition for the Jets’ dance team,” Linda said. “I’m a huge Jets fan, so that was like the coolest thing ever.”

But instead of a little girl watching the game, she is now a young woman who is part of the action.

“Being on the field is a whole different experience. From sitting in the stands, I feel like the field looks so chaotic,” she said. “When you’re down there, it doesn’t look like there are that many people.”

The Flight Crew continues to make a splash in the media. Linda has all the group's features stored away on a DVR at home.

“It’s really weird," she said. "We were on the Weather Channel on Sunday [Nov. 4] and my mom taped it. I watched it and it was like, ‘I was actually on TV.’

“Or we go to the merchandise tent and people want our autograph. It’s almost like, ‘I’m just Linda from Massapequa. Why do you want my autograph?’”

Her father is definitely walking with an extra bounce in his step these days. Despite having four daughters and no sons, one of his children made it to the National Football League.

“He tells everyone. He has pictures of me and hands them out at work,” Linda said. “This past game, he brought like 40 people and they had a huge tailgate. He is pretty proud of me because this is his little girl going to the NFL because he never had a son. He didn’t have to have a son to go to the NFL.”

Linda, now part of the show, wonders what it would be like to go back up in the stands and watch the Flight Crew perform. But her days as a spectator have been put on hold.

“We’ve never actually seen what we look like when we perform, but I think we do great. It would be nice to actually see, to be able to sit in the stands and watch nine of the girls dance,” she said innocently. “I would love to see that, but that’s not going to happen.”

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