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Author Topic: In honor of Black History Month  (Read 539 times)
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Starduster
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« on: February 12, 2020, 06:43:01 PM »

Hello All

As this is Black History Month, I would like to ask about African Americans in the history of Model Aviation?

I am genuinely interested, as I've never  seen this subject addressed.

Thanks

SD
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gman
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« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2020, 05:10:58 AM »

My 1960s memory says there was a  US Team Race pairing of Stockton/Jellick (not sure of the spelling) and one of those guys was black. They must have been good because I would have seen them in a World Champs report in Aeromodeller. BG on this forum can surely help.
Gavin
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billdennis747
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« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2020, 05:43:29 AM »

Yes Gavin, Herb Stockton and Don Jehlik and they were World Champions. I think Stockton was the pilot.
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Big G
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« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2020, 06:20:19 AM »

Yes, Gavin, Don Jehlik (pit-man) and Herb Stockton (pilot) were just about the first US TR team to make a mark in internationals. If my memory is correct, their list of successes is as below:

1965 Criterium (Belgium) - 2nd
1966 World Champs (UK) - 1st
1967 Criterium (Belgium) - 1st
1968 World Champs (Finland) - 1st
1972 World Champs (Finland) - 14th

Plus of course numerous successes in American competitions, including the Nats at least once.

Probably best known here for their racer called 'Jefe', published in Aeromodeller in or around 1966, originally for a highly-modifield Eta 15, later with HP15. It was a big lump of a model, and heavy, which made its performance all the more remarkable. I saw them fly on two or three occasions, and Jehlik had to be one of the fastest pit-men I saw. At the 1965 Criterium (I was there) Herb Stockton fell over during the final, yet managed to recover and carry on to place second. Those were the days!

G
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Buster11
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« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2020, 06:34:55 AM »

There was a black indoor F1D flyer, maybe in the 1960s, possibly Cummings?
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gman
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« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2020, 06:55:00 AM »

Ah BG, I knew that you would know. I hadn't realised just how successful a pairing they were. Weren't team racers in the 60s &70s just beautiful? I remember Soviet models with all the panel lines of a jet fighter. Just like the black carbon flying wings of today - NOT!
Then of course Wakefields of the era were varied and just delightful. Truly nostalgia ain't wot it was...
Ok so who was the black guy? Stockton or Jehlik? Or both or neither?
Gavin
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Big G
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« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2020, 06:59:49 AM »

Sorry, Herb Stockton the pilot was black. I think both he and Jehlik are now deceased.

Their Jefe model was an ugly bug, just purely functional. For my money, the most beautiful racer of all time was the 'Orion' by the Czech flyer Milan Drazek....but this is going a bit off-thread.

G
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duration
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« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2020, 08:55:23 AM »

Frank Cummings was inducted into the NFFS Hall of Fame in 1988. He was US National Champion in 1947 flying indoor & outdoor rubber, free flight gas, and control line. His prize was a full-size aircraft!

He tried for the US Wakefield team several times, narrowly missing in 1952. One photo shows him ready to r.o.g. his model, a twin-motor job, no doubt inspired by the P-38. He is holding both prop blades from the front of the model. I guess he let go of the prop blades and jumped over the model.

He was a serious indoor flier for many years and was among the first to break the 30 minute and 40 minute barriers. He made the US team for both the 1964 and 1966 indoor world champs. Unfortunately the 1964 WC were cancelled. But he did fly in the 1966 WC in Hungary.

I don't have a birth date, but the Sympo article mentions that Lindberg's 1927 flight got him interested in model airplanes.

Louis


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Buster11
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« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2020, 12:29:38 PM »

Thanks, Louis; nice to know that part of the brain cell still works...
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mick66
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« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2020, 05:04:01 PM »

Hi

I would guess you've never seen the subject addressed because most Aeromodellers see other Aeromodellers as Aeromodellers ... not black Aeromodellers or disabled Aeromodellers or whatever Aeromodellers.

I know some ginger Aeromodellers and they do indeed stand out from the crowd ... especially on baking hot sunny days when they look like they are about to burst into flames.

Cheers

Mike

PS Gingers can be sub-divided into two main classes.  The full on 'burst into flames if hit by a single photon' type ... and the 'DayWalker' variety that just give off slight whiffs of smoke in broad daylight


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skycafe
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« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2020, 06:06:12 PM »

Great thread!
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Indoorflyer
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« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2020, 06:34:43 PM »

Homer Hudson--Scale C/L flyer and modeler, trophy winner in the 1960s.   Model Airplane News published his beautiful Cessna 320 Skynight (plans on Outerzone) and P-51 'Sharp Shooter". 
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Re: In honor of Black History Month
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Starduster
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« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2020, 07:59:42 AM »

Thanks, all for the information. Very interesting indeed.

And, Mick, I do think you are correct. We do tend to be a rather inclusive lot.

A quick Google search for Herb Stockton came up with this:

https://books.google.com/books?id=KtoDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA64&lpg=PA64&dq=Herb+Stockton&source=bl&ots=irX7vZTx4s&sig=ACfU3U2f0ZWER02mcA2A0Z4hA4V7SPWgsw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiFyq_OjNHnAhXvQd8KHRDoDX0Q6AEwBXoECAoQAQ#v=onepage&q=Herb%20Stockton&f=false

If it doesn't come up on the right page, the article starts on page 64

SD
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billdennis747
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« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2020, 08:55:41 AM »

Fascinating. Is that Bill Wisniewski far left of the group photo? Brian Waterland tells how he was there at the UK World champs in 1966 when Bill won with his tuned pipe speed model. He recalls the Russians standing around laughing as the Pink Lady struggled into the air and hobbled around the circle. Then the tuned pipe came in!
Incidentally the article refers to the RAF station as being 'near London'. I suppose in US terms, 140 miles may be near but in fact RAF
Swinderby is halfway up England!
« Last Edit: February 14, 2020, 09:29:28 AM by billdennis747 » Logged
lincoln
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« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2020, 09:28:01 AM »

I don't know if he counts as "history" just yet, but for many years Vance Gilbert has been the Flying Aces Club's best cheerleader and most entertaining person. He puts a great deal of energy and talent into challenging, unusual subjects which he makes fly well, often winning at the highest levels. If you see a video of a good flight from the FAC Nats, that's probably his voice in the background cheering. He writes a column for the newsletter and If I had a better memory I could probably tell you about stuff he does for GHQ.
I got into mass launch events after seeing how much fun he had with them and hearing his accompanying sound effects.
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