By Kristin Schaick, Warbirds Squadron 32 Commander, EAA 740388
Warbirds Squadron 32 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, celebrated its fifth anniversary on September 25, 2021, at Wittman Regional Airport. Airport Director Jim Schell and Deputy Airport Director Cameron Hallock were awesome to work with at the airport, and held our hand through the process as this was our first fly-in event. They even came out and visited us.
The winds were brutal, and it was a bit chilly, but about 150 people joined us to celebrate our first fly-in/drive-in. Throughout the day about 15 aircraft landed, had lunch, and took off. Twelve Young Eagles received their first flight thanks to John Powalisz, EAA 1435998, and Gary Otto, EAA 145017. Veteran Denny Jones with the VFW received a veteran flight in a T-34 Mentor with Mike Woods. Korean War veteran Jerry Pommerening and volunteer John Warren received a flight in an SNJ Texan with Gary Otto. Thank you to the Commemorative Air Force Wisconsin Wing for donating these rides to these great individuals.
The Military Veterans Museum and Education Center brought their WWII command car, one-and-a-half ton with Quad 50, and Vietnam 5,000-gallon tanker. Thank you to Stu Tribbey for organizing this. These vehicles were a great addition to our event. Gary Otto brought two of his military jeeps, and Bill Fischer, EAA 9001812, had an awesome display of authentic gear including his jeep.
The VFW was a great addition to our event. They provided all of the food for the event, and let me tell you, this was the best event hamburger I have ever tasted.
A special thanks to Bob Ehrenberg for providing the cheese and making a special trip to show off his Citabria. It was a beautiful airplane and we thank him for joining us.
I want to give a huge thank you to the Commemorative Air Force Wisconsin Wing for all of their support with this event. They helped with everything. They helped with volunteers, brought their beautiful airplanes, helped us with ramp lay-outs and safety protocols, and were a great asset in helping us pull off our first event.
From everyone here at Squadron 32, we would like to publicly thank everyone who volunteered to help make this event a huge success. From set-up to take-down, everyone pitched in to make sure that everything worked smoothly, and we thank everyone. Not really knowing what to expect from our first event, I think it was a complete success. We hope to have more events like this in the future!