Greetings from The Aero Experience Team


The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!

Blue skies,

Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team

Sunday, September 4, 2016

2016 Year In Aviation Service: Stearman Flight Salutes Education

By Carmelo Turdo
By Fred Harl
The Midwest Aviation community recently demonstrated it's support for a local development project during a gathering of the Stearman Flight at Creve Coeur Airport in St. Louis.  The Aero Experience was there when the veteran Stearman pilots, some based at Creve Coeur Airport and others from neighboring states, met on Friday afternoon, August 26.  We discovered that there was a great aviation service story in the making!

Members of the Stearman Flight arrived at the fuel pumps around noon, and eventually nine of the Yellow and blue World War II-era trainers were arranged neatly on the Creve Coeur Airport apron.  The aircraft were being prepared for a large formation fly-over of the home opening Christian Brothers College (CBC) High School Cadets football game at the nearby campus.  The fly-over was arranged through the CBC High School Alumni Office, with the assistance of parents of current CBC High School students.         

Following the arrival of the aircraft, the crews went inside the airport's office hangar for lunch and the start of a series of interviews in a studio area assembled by Rich Murphy of Obata Design.  Each pilot and passenger participating in the fly-over were encouraged to appear briefly on video and discuss their flying experiences.  The interviews, along with video taken from the aircraft later during the flight, will be used in producing a promotional message to be used in an upcoming fundraising campaign for CBC High School this fall.  This gesture of aviation service to the community will provide benefits to the school for future generations of students.

The mission briefing began around 4pm in the office hangar.  Rod Hightower, flight leader for the nine-ship formation, began the briefing with a review of the crew assignments, critical times, navigation markers and other critical items.  The nine aircraft would take off singly and form up into three flights heading out to the holding area.  The plan for the flight included the joining of all nine aircraft into a nine-ship diamond formation as they approached the football field.  Following the group briefing, each flight leader held a briefing on join-up procedures and other important details for safe operations during the approaching dusk flight.      


The Aero Experience continued our coverage through the afternoon operations - taxi to the grass runway, crew and video camera preparations and then launch on the main runway.  We thank the crews and all involved with the Friday evening CBC High School fly-over for their hospitality during our coverage.  



Check back soon for our next story as The Aero Experience flies with the Stearman Flight as they fly formation over St. Louis County. 

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