Crop Duster: I began my flying career at a dirt patch airport SW of San Antonio,
Tex. in the early '40s. I obtaining my private pilot certificate shortly after
and then moved over to Stinson Field where I flew until I went to work for the
USAF at Hondo, Tex. in 1950. Prior to going to work for the USAF, I flew one
season in air show aerobatics, followed by three seasons in crop dusting and
spraying. I have previously mentioned that I flew 10 years as a Civilian USAF
Contract Flight Instructor. I moved to Fla. in 1957 when the USAF closed the
base in Hondo, and continued instructing for the USAF at Bartow, Fla.. I continued
flying Primary training of AF Students until they closed all Civilian Contract
bases in 1960. After the Air Force resumed the primary flight training programs
for their students, I went back to agricultural flying, mosquito control work, etc.
for the next 30 years, while operating my own aviation FBO at Gilbert Field in
Winter Haven. Fla.
About the time I left Stinson Field, a pilot named Duke Bledsoe moved to San
Antonio and began flying there. He knew all the people at Stinson Field that I
had known. Duke was also an agricultural pilot. In the intervening years, Duke
had also moved to Fla. We never met until possibly 30 years later while I was
operating my FBO at Gilbert Field. I had done my agricultural flying in Texas,
La., Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado. Duke did most of his "south of the
border" and in the eastern part of the U. S. After we finally met, we got to
"shootin' the breeze" about the people we both knew in San Antonio and about things
that happened in our crop dusting operations and decided to write a book on the
funny stuff that we had experienced and or had seen in that type of flying - including
the time I "killed" myself in a crash - at least that is what the doctor said would
result from that crash - many years ago! Lots of funny stories!
I am currently writing two or three more: How to obtain Supplemental Type Certificates:
(I have developed and own five STCs) How to build a plane that is no longer
manufactured and have it certificated under the original Type Certificate!
(I currently own the production rights to two antique bi-planes) How to assemble
a plane from parts and get it Certificated by the FAA. There is all kinds of
information out there if one knows where to find it, and how to use it!