Sunday, October 4, 2009

ICAS Foundation Announces 2009 Hall of Fame Inductees

The International Council of Air Shows Foundation (ICASF) will be inducting three worthy candidates into their Air Show Hall of Fame during the 2009 convention, to be held December 6-9 at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas. This year’s three outstanding inductees are Bobby Younkin, Tom Poberezny, and Charlie Kulp.

Bobby Younkin

In 2004 at 18 years old, Bobby Younkin performed in his first airshow using the Decathlon in which he learned to fly. Bobby’s aerobatic/airshow career included a stock Stearman act through the 1970s, and AT-6 in the 1980s, his famous Twin Beech in 1989, and Steve Wolf’s “Samson” in 1991. In 2002 Bobby secured a sponsorship from American Champion Aircraft, and returned to his roots with a low-level airshow in a Decathlon. In 2003 Bobby stunned the airshow world by adding a smoke system to a Learjet, and becoming the only performer to fly an aerobatic airshow routine in the Lear. Bobby Younkin inspired and mentored countless airshow pilots through his three-plus decades of innovation in the airshow industry. Younkin passed away in 2005 in an airshow accident in Moose Jaw, Saskatchuan, Canada. He joins fellow performer Jimmy Franklin, who passed away in the the same accident, in the Hall of Fame.

Tom Poberezny

Tom Poberezny could have easily qualified for Hall of Fame status either as a performer, but also as an event organizer and industry leader. As a performer, Poberezny’s 25-year career with the Eagle Aerobatic Team was legendary, as the three-ship team (including fellow airshow legends Charlie Hillard and Gene Soucy) became the most successful civilian aerobatic team in airshow history. The Eagles established a professional standard to which all performers have subsequently aspired. Their commitment to safety, their professionalism, and their showmanship are still having a positive impact on our entire industry. As an airshow organizer, Tom has overseen astounding growth in both the attendance and the sophistication of EAA AirVenture over the past 30 years. Tom also served many years on the ICAS Board and has always been a reliable leader on issues within the airshow community.

Charlie Kulp

In 1971, Charlie Kulp became a charter member/founder of the famous Flying Circus located in Bealton, Virginia. Two years later, he became of of its star performers when he developed his famous “Silas Hicks, the Flying Farmer” routine, an act he continued to perform until his retirement in October, 2007 at the age of 82. Charlie’s routine changed little over his 800+ performances in the U.S. and worldwide. Charlie’s comedy routine featured him “getting an airplane ride” in payment for mowing the grass at the airport. He’d approach the Piper Cub with his cane, the “instructor” would strap him in, then leave him unattended for a moment while he inspected the tail wheel. The engine would pop to life, and off Charlie flew, on the verge of a stall, into a loop, a spin, and rarely more than 200 feet from the ground. Charlie inspired today’s crop of comedy fliers to entertain low and slow, with a friendly plot and mastery of the aircraft.

For additional information, contact Steve Oliver at

The ICAS Foundation is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the history, and recognizing the advances of, the air show industry. Our mission is to provide the necessary resources to leave a lasting legacy of our industry for others to follow and perpetuate.


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