After graduating with an engineering degree from Western Michigan University and spending four years living with roommates who were in the aviation program, Bill began flight training shortly thereafter. In the ensuing 30-plus years he has flown over 90 different makes and models of aircraft. “I have some very generous friends, for which I am very thankful,” he says, noting that he has been fortunate to fly everything from antiques and warbirds to many unique homebuilts. He currently flies his Van’s RV‐9, which he completed in 2007 with the help of his wife Nora.
On July 16, 2016 the sky was covered with cotton candy clouds as two hundred airplanes converged on Washington Island for the annual fish boil. Some slipped unnoticed across the Cheddar Curtain and into Wisconsin from Northern Illinois. Others flew east out of the North Woods and across Green Bay. A few pilots and passengers put on their life vests and flew across the lake at Charlevoix, skipping over the Beaver Island chain and following the coast down to Washington Island. They flew in for one purpose: to enjoy boiled Whitefish, potatoes, onions and friends.
Over the 4th-of July weekend a Thunder storm and resulting flood has damaged the Chicken strip in the Saline Valley, part of Death Valley in California. The damage is significant enough to temporarily CLOSE the strip until repairs can be made. Rick Lach, California State Liaison, is working with the Park Service to put together a work party to repair the damage. If you are interested in helping to drag and smooth the strip in order to bring it back into safe operation, please e-mail or contact Rick.
The 2016 Summer Newsletter is now available. If you would prefer a paper copy let us know and we are happy to put one in the mail to you or stop by any RAF event and we will have them there.
This is our 18th issue and we are proud to share these updates with you. We have lots of news to share with you so you won't want to miss it. Be sure to share it with friends and encourage them to get involved as well.
Illinois RAF member, Greg DeJong, hosts the website Chicago Flying Advisor. His goal is to share local aviation treasures with pilots, around the Chicago area. He recently joined RAF Illinois State Liaison, Mike Purpura, for a day trip to North Fox Island. Here is what he had to say, “A June highlight for me has been a trip to North Fox Island in northern Lake Michigan. Thanks to the efforts of the Recreational Aviation Foundation, a do
Lori grew up the youngest (with a twin sister) in a large aviation family. Her father served as navigator on a B-29 during WWII, and later piloted his family around the country in a PA-11, a Skywagon, and a Piper Navajo.