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Unedited copy as submitted for the Aug 1, 1998 issue of EAA Today.
Touch and Go
by Jack Hodgson

Audio Archives... legendary EAA member... regional fly-ins... WWII Medal of Honor winner.

Twenty-five years ago EAA member Dave Yeoman told founder Paul Poberezny, "Someone should be recording the forum sessions at the fly-in, because otherwise, once they're spoken, they're lost." Paul thought this was a good idea and recruited Dave to take on the task.

"I didn't even own a tape recorder back then," says Dave. "I begged and borrowed machines to record those early sessions.

"One year I got here and realized I didn't have enough machines for all the forums that would be happening at one time. I didn't know what to do. Then I remembered that some of my machines were stereo. So I ran long microphone cables and recorded two forums on one machine."

Dave's recordings are available for sale every year here at the fly-in. What's less well know is that Dave still has all the forum tapes that he's ever made. All the way back to 1972.

By the time AirVenture Oshkosh '98 is finished Dave will have recorded over 5000 sessions. And any of them can be purchased on cassette. Want to hear the 1988 forum "'Catbird' Design Philosophy" by Burt Rutan? Or the 1972 "Tailwind" forum by Steve Wittman or "EAA Acrosport" by Paul Poberezny? Those and thousands other are available.

A complete list can be found at the Forums Office at the south end of the EAA Forum Plaza. Or the list can be viewed on the web at .

The legendary Duane Cole is not reluctant to speak his mind. At his EAA Forum at AirVenture '98, he filled us in on a few of his thoughts.

"Now I'm gonna talk about the FAA. I wasn't gonna talk about the FAA... but damn, it's hard not to talk about the FAA."

"They don't call them ARSAs any more 'cause they thought they were talking about the FAA."

Expressing his dissatisfaction for the style of todays' airshows: "The airshow here is all up and down, up and down. Except for Sean Tucker, who's all sideways."

You could call it "Fly-in Row". In the southwest corner of the EAA Action Pavilion are the booths of four smaller EAA fly-ins. For those of you who can't get enough this week you can stop by and talk with representatives from these exciting regional events.

The Golden West Regional EAA Fly-in is held September 25-27, 1998 at Castle Airport in Merced, California. "We're in the geographical center of 25% of all registered aircraft and pilots in the U.S."

The Copperstate Regional EAA Fly-in is held October 8-11, 1998 at Williams Gateway Airport in Mesa, Arizona. "We're the 4th largest EAA fly-in after Oshkosh, Sun 'n Fun, and Arlington."

The EAA Southwest Regional Fly-in is held October 15-18, 1998 at Abilene Regional Airport in Abilene, Texas. "We're the 'Big Country' fly-in, we'll have 500 aircraft of all kinds, fly-bys, forums, exhibits and much more."

The Virginia State EAA Fly-in held June 26-27, 1999 at Petersburg Municipal Airport in Dinwiddie, Virginia. "In addition to conventional general aviation airplanes, we feature ultralight, powered parachute, and radio controlled aircraft throughout the entire fly-in."

"He would have loved EAA and the fly-in," said Marge Bong Drucker, widow of WWII Medal of Honor winner Major Richard I. Bong. But he never had a chance because, soon after the war's end, the Wisconsin born hero of World War II was killed while test-piloting a Lockheed P-80 "Shooting Star".

"He would have been thrilled by all the airplanes and activity," said Mrs. Drucker.

By the fall of 1943 Major Bong was an American "Ace of Aces", having shot down 21 enemy planes, and by the war's end he had shot down 40 enemy planes, a record that still stands today.

Now Major Bong is being remembered in a new Museum that is being built in Superior, Wisconsin. Here at the fly-in you can learn more about the "Richard Ira Bong Heritage Center," and talk with Marge Bong Drucker, at Booth #4115 in Exhibit Hangar D.

"With his P-38 he would have been up there in the skies with the rest of them showing off." Who knows, may be he is.