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Straight and Level – December 2016

GeoffHeaderby Geoff Robison, VAA President
VAA Life Member 12606, EAA Life Member 268346

The EAA, the VAA Board of Directors & Staff and Volunteers of Vintage, and a huge number of our friends in Aviation in the Atlanta area are mourning the tragic loss of Ron Alexander who recently lost his life during a flight in his beloved Jenny. Let me first say that our hearts and prayers go out to the family of Ron.

This man was the epitome of an Aviator. The best descriptor of Ron I have heard was “Quiet Giant of Aviation”. He was proud to call himself a Hoosier who first immersed himself in Aviation at the age of 14, and he never looked back. He graduated from Indiana University in Bloomington Indiana. This extremely kind gentleman built an Aviation empire around himself at the Peach State Aerodrome in Williamson Georgia. His generosity and support of youth trying to find their path to Aviation is just amazing. He would invite these young men and women into his restoration facility and engage them into a complete education of how to repair and restore Vintage aircraft.

The only payment these youth would receive for their efforts was free flight training from Ron from their first introductory flight right through to their check ride. I had the pleasure of spending some time at Peach State Aerodrome this past March and it was just an amazing experience. As I was struggling with the news of this tragedy, these facts inspired me to say to the many friends I was calling with this sad news, “When I grow-up I want to be just like Ron Alexander”. We have lost an Icon of Aviation, and I personally feel like I have lost a brother, not just a good friend.

The Board of Directors of the Vintage Aircraft Assn. recently met in Oshkosh for our annual Fall Board session. It was a great meeting and we spent a great deal of time discussing our plans for additional Capital Improvement projects in the Vintage area of Operations.

Congratulations to Phil Coulson, VAA Director Emeritus and a Vintage Judge he was inducted into the VAA Hall of Fame during the EAA’s Hall of Fame Ceremony in Oshkosh on November 10th.

“Oshkosh 2017…it’s going to be another great one!” Always remember, we are better together!

Share your passion for Vintage Aircraft at every opportunity and ask a friend to join up with the VAA.

It is never too early to begin your planning to attend the “World’s Greatest Aviation Event”.
Thanks for being a Member, and we hope to see you at Oshkosh 2017. July 24th thru the 30th.

The adventure lives on!

Geoff Sig

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