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At 17, Howard's interest in flying was sparked when he saw a fliers performing in their flying circus. By 18, he had saved up enough cash to buy a biplane. In those days learning how to fly was often self taught.
In his first racing plane, "Pete", Howard won five air races. As competition increased, he and his partner, Gordon Israel, built two larger,…Continue
Posted on October 24, 2012 at 3:59pm
Wittman’s first air race was in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1926 in which he placed second. Wittman’s first race plane was constructed in 1931 and made its debut at the National Air Races in Cleveland that year. It was initially powered by an American Cirrus engine. Each winter Wittman would rebuild the 'Chief', and over the years the refinements added significantly…Continue
Posted on October 7, 2012 at 7:39am
Rudy Kling, the son of a German immigrant and the sixth of 11 children, grew up on a farm west of Lemont.
Despite his skill with automobiles, his real love was airplanes. Kling attended night classes at Joliet Township High School to learn navigation. There he befriended a man who would have a major impact on his life: Art Chester, a Downers Grove racer who…Continue
Posted on September 30, 2012 at 8:00am
Bayles was born in Mason, Illinois on January 24, 1900 and was working as an electrician in various mines around Illinois when he began taking flying lessons. After a stint back in the mines, Bayles began barnstorming around the country. Due to the Great Depression, the Granville Brothers Aircraft Company saw the air racing circuit as a way to stay in business. To…Continue
Posted on September 28, 2012 at 7:15am — 1 Comment