Arnold and I will be heading to Oshkosh and AirVenture Thursday morning. We’re going to be driving this year, so I hope I find something really heavy to buy and drag home!
We’re going to be stopping by Felts Field near Spokane to deliver Arnold’s BD-5 plans to Clark Taylor, who acquired a used kit with no plans.
Arnold and Gary Hertzler, who holds the current closed course distance world record for C-1a aircraft and formerly held the world record that Arnold now holds, will be talking about their records at an AirVenture Forum on Friday, August 1 at 1000. I’ll be attempting to moderate the conversation, if that’s possible. If you’ll be at AirVenture, please stop by for what should be a very interesting conversation with lots of time for questions and answers!
Also, I’ve posted all the material from my manuscript that I planned to, so I’m going to scale back on my posts to about once every two weeks. I’m planning to provide posts about other record setters and general aviation topics of interest. Also, if anyone has anything specific they would like to ask Arnold, please leave a comment or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll post the answer in a future blog post.
In 2011, the FAI awarded Arnold the Louis Bleriot Medal for his 2010 distance record. Gary Hertzler, Edgar Lesher, and Junni Heinonen, the previous holders of Arnold’s record are also Bleriot Medal recipients for their respective flights.
Here’s a picture of the awards ceremony in Southern California in November 2011:
Bleriot Medal Award Ceremony (Eileen Bjorkman personal collection)
The ceremony took place at the Flight Path Learning Center and Museum near LAX, which explains the flight attendant statue in the background!
Many EAA members have received Bleriot medals, so Arnold is in good company. In addition to Hertzler and Lesher, some of the EAA members include Dick Rutan, Robert L. “Hoot” Gibson, Brian Bohannon, Jon Sharp, Norm Howell, and Steve Wittman (this is by no means an exhaustive list)!
In January 2010, the NAA selected Arnold’s feat as one of the “Ten Most Notable Aviation Awards of 2010,” and he attended an awards banquet on March 15, 2011, in Arlington, Virginia, along with my sister Kate and me. Here’s a picture:
NAA Ceremony in Arlington, VA, 2011 (Eileen Bjorkman personal collection)
Richard Truly, a retired navy admiral, retired astronaut, and former head of NASA, was also feted at the event. Normally, my dad would have hung back, hoping for an opportunity to meet someone like Truly, but instead, when the event was over, Truly marched over to our table, introduced himself and said, “Wow, that was quite a feat you did!”