The hugely successful 12th annual District II Fly-In was held August 16-17, 2014, at the former Grumman F-14 assembly plant in Riverhead, New York, on Long Island. Located on the site's 7,000 foot runway, modelers had space for every type of flying. Scale, 3-D, foamies, electrics, turbines, helicopters, multicopters, CL, Soaring, and even some FF aircraft flew at the National Model Aviation Day event to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.
The 2014 District II Fly-In was a first for Long Island. With hard work and volunteerism from the Long Island Aero Modelers Association (LIAMA), AMA members, individuals and sponsors, and the Town of Riverhead, the event was a huge success. The combined flightline was 1/4 mile long. Members of the New York National Guard and Grumman retirees attended.
Town officials read a proclamation recognizing National Model Aviation Day. They apparently liked it because they came back the second day to have their families fly on buddy boxes and asked for the event’s return in 2015!
Thanks to LIAMA, CD Chuck Davis, and his hard-working wife, Adrienne.
Former AMA District II Vice President Joe Beshar passed away on August 26, 2014. On Saturday, August 30, I attended Joe’s funeral in Haworth, New Jersey, along with AMA President, Bob Brown and other AMA representatives. The remembrances at Joe’s services were of a man with a passion for model aviation and a drive to get things accomplished.
Among Joe's accomplishments was the District II emblem, pictured on the District II website. The emblem was the result of a design contest lead by Joe and won by Henry Heuler of the Hackensack RC Flyers at the 1994 Westchester Radio Aero Modelers (WRAM) Show.
As AMA’s first Flying Site Assistance Coordinator, Joe fostered the AMA/EPA memorandum of understanding and the partnership between the two organizations. The partnership created many flying sites across the US and is documented in EPA-produced videos. I've mentioned the AMA/EPA partnership when speaking with public officials about flying sites. The EPA’s good-news story of environmental awareness and modelers as “stewards of the land” has well served clubs and members.
Joe was a published author, member of the Society of Antique Modelers, the AMA Model Aviation Hall of Fame, and Vintage RC Society Hall of Fame. He received numerous other awards.
It was said at Joe’s funeral that during his service as a World War II pilot, he flew on a mission with 54 B-17s and only four aircraft returned. Of all Joe’s achievements, perhaps that mission is the one we should be the most grateful for. Happy flying, Joe.
Remember, it’s not about what we fly, it’s about the people and the friends we make![dingbat]