Dick Roe Remembered

By Bob Mann, EAA 8900, Bracebridge, Ontario

I received this very nice email from Bob, and am delighted to be able to share it with you. – Ian Brown, Bits and Pieceseditor

Just read the May issue of the Bits and Pieces newsletter and yes indeed I do know Dick Roe. I first met him in 1951 when I was 7 years old. We had just moved in across the street from him and you are right he did look old, but when you are 7 every adult looks old. Dick and his wife Annie and my parents became lifelong friends. He would tell us stories about his time in the British Army in France during WWI. I don’t know when Dick moved to Canada but I know he worked for Ford Motor Co. in Windsor until he retired. Dick has “gone west” as my mother notified me at the time but I can’t recall when. My mother passed away in 2003 so it would have been before then. On April 24, 1965, the Windsor Star did an article on EAA Chapter 185 and in it there was a picture of my dad and Dick. They said in the article that the membership age ranged from 20 to 68, Dick being 68.

Dick standing beside the Cub in a friend’s field in Bothwell ON, where they went for a visit in 1964

My dad, George, got his pilot’s license in 1958 and bought a Piper J-3 which I have and still fly. According to my dad’s logbook Dick’s name first appeared in June 23, 1963, and the last was in August 18, 1974. The reason for that was my dad built a Volksplane VP-1, single seat, and I had the Cub in Hamilton where I lived. They flew approximately 50 hours over that time period. I am sure that Dick flew with other members of Chapter 185 as he was an enthusiastic copilot and editor of the chapter newsletter The Log Sheet. I don’t know how long he was editor but I have two Log Sheets, one dated June 1967 and one dated June 1978 with him as editor but I’m sure he was at it longer than that.

The Volksplane dad built and flew to Oshkosh in 1978

I joined EAA at the Rockford fly-in in 1959, the same year I started taking instruction in the Cub. I got my pilot’s license in 1961 (you had to be 17 back then) and that’s when a group of us started talking about starting an EAA chapter. According to the same Windsor Star article, Chapter 185 was started in 1963. The other person in the picture with Dick is Bob Dauldin. Bob and I are quite possibly the only two charter members of the club that have not “gone west.” Bob is a lawyer and a retired Ontario court judge. He was also a MP for a number of years. After I moved to Hamilton (1968) the only contact I had with the chapter was through The Log Sheet that my dad would send me. Dad joined the chapter in 1965 and that is how Dick got involved.

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