My airplane interest started about the age of ten. I had found some old model airplane parts in a box. When I asked my dad, he said they were his from childhood. He had built many model airplanes. We talked about the planes he built and broke! That Christmas I got a Cox Fly by Wire trainer airplane. The wings were held on by large rubber bands. I spent most of that summer flying or I should say crashing the airplane till I ran out of rubber bands. Eventually the plane took its last crash and became un-flyable.
Fast forward to 1985, my cousin Nick wanted to meet up at the Oshkosh EAA fly in. Nick had some war bird friends that were coming in from Denver, Colorado. We eventually met up on the airport grounds. Nick was talking to a group of people. Nick introduced me to the group. There was Chuck Yeager, and two WAFS with a military escort. I don’t remember the WAFS names but both were retired Colonels. The conversation was very interesting with all of them sharing their aviation stories. The comment by Chuck Yeager that stuck with me was he had to bail out of some perfectly good aircraft. My aircraft interest was rekindled.
I went to EAA Oshkosh every couple of years. In 2016, I became an EAA member #1205932. That same year I crossed off one of my to do items from my Bucket List. I took a ride in a WWII airplane the B17 Aluminum Overcast. After the flight experience, I wanted to find out more about the airplane business. Having been an auto mechanic for over 25 years, aviation school seemed too expensive at that time.
In 2022, I started looking for an EAA chapter near me to get more involved in airplanes in general. There was a Barnstormers event at Galt airport sponsored by EAA chapter 932. The event was awesome, there were all types of airplanes. The day of the event I spoke to a few of the chapter members. They were all outgoing and encouraging. I was so impressed by their comradery that I joined chapter 932 that day. It has been a good year getting to know all the members and their families.