Air Show Narration & Sound
307 West Fredericks Street
Anderson, South Carolina 29625
Carolina Airshows, a Personal History
This is a work in progress
Over the intervening years, I have had the privilege to work with and learn from some of the finest people in the world: Airshow People. From the performers to the people who work so hard behind the scenes - they're all great!
Here's a few of them:
(Another work in progress, additional information requested)
Walt Pierce of Avon Park FL. Walt is ICAS # 14, flying airshows since 1963. His memory of events and people is phenomenal and a national asset. Pierce has flown many many airshow across the Carolinas, known many of the airshow greats and continues to carry on the tradition of the Barnstromer. Walt has been instrumental in the development of this web page with his comments scatter throughout. Thanks Walt!
Visit his home page: http://www.americanbarnstormer.com/index.html
The Pepsi Aerial Entertainers. Pepsi, born in New Bern NC, is a natural for Carolina airshows. Steve and Suzanne Oliver are the longest running and most successful airshow act we have worked with. Keeping a major sponsor happy and performing before millions, this pair rank in the top tier of professionalism and great people too (see page 10). http://www.pepsiteam.com/
He learned to accomplish this feat by repeatedly practicing take-offs inverted, landing up right, using a construction crane to pick-up the Pitts, flip it over and take-off again. After becoming comfortable with the inverted take-off he then taught himself to land up-side down.
Craig retired his act around 1988 and went into movie flying full time. You may have seen his handy work as both pilot and aerial coordinator in movies like "Speed 2" (that's Craig trying to push Sandra Bullock out of the float plane), "Mission Impossible 2," "Windtalkers" (With his Dad Otto pilot Bob), " Con Air" and many others.
Robert A. "Bob" Hoover of Los Angles Calif. The pilots' pilot. WWII 52d Fighter Group flying Supermarine Mk V Spitfire. Captured on 59th mission, 16 months in Stalag I. Commandeering a German FW-190 and flew to Holland. North American Aviation Corporation Test Pilot. Demonstrated F-86 in Korea to USAF pilots. Flew combat missions a civilian. Then flew airshows.
Dwight Cross, Jr., Huntersville NC. A second generation aviator (and Chevrolet dealer) who's father (Dwight Shaw Cross, Sr.), set several aviation records during the "golden age" (won the Miami Air Races in 1935, second place in 1934). Dwight Jr. brought a new level of precision to Carolina Airshows and leadership to sport aviation. Additional pictures of Dwight Jr. and his Pitts.
And outstanding site for information and history of the Pitts airplane: http://www.steenaero.com/PittsS1/
Bud Light Air Force. No superlatives needed here; say Leo, you've said it all.
L to R: Leo in the Extra, Ed Johnson in the Bud Light Jet and Leo Loudenslager walking through his aerobatic routine prior to his performance.
The Bud Light Jet was later flown by Bill "Burner" Beardsley and crewed by his Dad "Big B." http://www.icasfoundation.org/hall_fame/2000/hf_beardsley.htm
Ron Shelly and Bill Fitzsimmons, Northern Va. Ron, a retired Naval Aviator, and Bill Fitz, a CIA Analysis; this pair developed a unique wingwalking act that included the "Bill Fitz Inverted Wing Sitz."
(Note: Both of these photos were autographed using ball point pen. The signatures have faded away. Use permanent markers like a "Sharpie")
Jane & Kirk Wicker, Va. Jane and Kirk resurrected the unique wingwalking act. Jane was able to recreate both the Inverted Wing Sit and the unbelievable "Hang Dangle."