We all have heard the story of Herb Kelleher and Rollin King sitting down at the St. Anthony’s Club in 1966 and the legendary cocktail napkin on which the Texas Triangle that would represent our first route map was sketched out.
From that meeting came Herb’s legendary reply, “You’re crazy—let’s do it!” to Rollin’s idea about forming a new airline. But why were Herb and Rollin meeting in the first place? To discuss Rollin’s first airline—Southwest Airlines, Inc., which did business as the Wild Goose Flying Service.
Wild Goose flew an intra-Texas route map which also resembled a triangle, just not between Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. Operating eight-seat Beech 18s, the smaller markets of Uvalde, Brackettville, and Eagle Pass were served. Although Rollin’s initial airline endeavor proved to be unsustainable (Rollin had retained Herb as his lawyer to oversee the liquidation of the company,) the Wild Goose Flying Service was actually the first airline to bear the name Southwest Airlines over the skies of Texas.