A tribute to the patriarch

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The late Robert L. Taylor, Antique Airplane Association (AAA) founder and patriarch, grew up during the golden age of aviation.

Bob was attracted to flying early in his life, when he bought a camera and began taking photographs of airplanes at a local airport. He soloed a 1941 Interstate Cadet in 1946, and this airplane (NC37381) was prominently displayed in front of the hangars at the 2020 AAA fly-in, held over Labor Day weekend at Antique Airfield (IA27) in Blakesburg, Iowa.

Bob joined the squadron heading west just shy of his 96th birthday in June 2020, and his personable presence on the flight line at the annual fly-in was greatly missed.

Robert L. Taylor at the 2003 AAA-APM Fly-in with “Happiness” the Hatz.

The Air Power Museum Gift Shop had a special “Founder’s Tribute” T-shirt available, featuring Bob’s original ad that started the AAA, and the cover image of the September 1953 Flying magazine in which the ad appeared. 

The fly-in was first held at Ottumwa Regional Airport (KOTM), but Bob had always wanted an airstrip of his own, and bought 150 acres near Blakesburg in 1969. He cleared an east/west runway, and built Hangar One … and shortly thereafter, moved the fly-in to Antique Airfield. Thanks to the generosity of AAA members and volunteers, the facilities have continually evolved and improved ever since. 

“Dad made the first landing at Antique Airfield

This post was originally published by General Aviation News on . Please visit the original post to read the complete article.

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