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South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame

The South Dakota Pilots Association promotes the active support of the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame through the SDPA newsletter.

The SD Aviation Hall of Fame is a non-profit South Dakota corporation with federal tax-exempt status, established to honor the pioneers and contributors to South Dakota aviation. Their history, accomplishment, impact on South Dakota, and memorabilia will be on display and available for inspection in the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame building to be located on the Black Hills Airport / Clyde Ice Field, Spearfish, SD.

If you know of someone from South Dakota who you believe would be a good nominee for the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame, please complete and submit the appropriate Nominee Application or contact Ted Miller at 605-642-0277.

The Inductees

Famous inductees such as Clyde Ice, Joe Foss, Duane Corning, Nellie Willhite, Charles Gemar, and more have been honored by the SD Aviation Hall of Fame.

Over 200 combat aircrew members have been inducted into the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame, and were residents of South Dakota who served their country with honor while flying combat tours in the many wars of the United States, from World War I to the present.

The Home

Presently, the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame, Inc. has an exhibit of Aviation Hall of Fame members and combat aircrew members at the South Dakota Air and Space Museum located adjacent to Ellsworth Air Force Base, Box Elder, SD.

A new home (shown right, drawn by Claudette Miller) is planned in the future at the Black Hills / Clyde Ice Field, Spearfish, SD, to house the exhibit, aircraft, and memorabilia of the Hall of Fame members for future generations.

Building Fund

A building fund has been established and donations are solicited for this unique South Dakota institution. Your contributions are greatly appreciated. A contribution wall will be constructed and consist of plaques showing the donor’s name and section.

Building Fund Contributions

 

Platinum Eagle

$5,000.00 or more
 

Golden Eagle

$1,000.00 or more
 

Silver Eagle

$500.00 or more
 

Bronze Eagle

$100.00 or more
 

Annual Membership

$35.00

Contacts

South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame
Black Hills / Clyde Ice Field
424 Aviation Place
Spearfish, SD 57783
Phone 605-642-0277 (days)

President
Ted Miller
Black Hills Aero
424 Aviation Place
Spearfish, SD 57783
605-642-0277 (days)
Email: bha@mato.com

Vice President
Rich Krogstad
320 N. Tinton Road
Spearfish, SD 57783
Home 605-642-5385
Email: richkrogstad81143@gmail.com

Board of Directors
Ted Miller, Spearfish
 Rich Krogstad, Spearfish
Pearl Gulbranson, Spearfish
Tami Schroeder, Brookings
Bobbie Potts, Gettysburg

Selection Committee
Rich Krogstad, Spearfish
Dwayne LaFave, DeSmet
Grove Rathbun, Rapid City
Denny Martens, Vermillion
Steve Hamilton, Yankton
Ken McGirr, Sturgis
Bobbie Potts, Gettysburg

Raffle
The SD Aviation Hall of Fame is searching for a “Light Sport Plane” to use in a fund-raising raffle.  If you know of a light sport plane like a J-3 Cub or PA-11, PLEASE contact Ted Miller at 605-642-0277 or email bha@mato.com -- at your earliest opportunity!! 

Once a plane has been secured for a Raffle, flyers about the raffle will be mailed through out the state and advertised in the newsletter of the South Dakota Pilots Association. 

Tentatively, a Raffle drawing will be held in mid-September.  Raffle tickets will probably cost $50 each.  MORE DETAILS LATER.  Make checks payable to the SD Aviation Hall of Fame, and mail to SD Aviation Hall of Fame, 424 Aviation Way, Spearfish, SD 57783.  Your raffle ticket will be mailed to you.  Need not be present to win.  Proceeds to the SD Aviation Hall of Fame, non-profit 503-C.

Donated Aircraft
If you have artifacts or an aircraft to donate to the South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame, please contact Ted Miller.

Make & Model: Stits Playmate built by Henry Conrad Balcer
Year: 1968
N number: N6515
Donator: Charlotte Andersen, MD, Badger, SD
Location: Black Hills Aero, Black Hills Airport / Clyde Ice Field, Spearfish, SD

When my Dad started welding chromoly steel in our one-car garage, my 6 year-old eyes were wide with excitement -- this pile of metal was going to be our airplane?  I spent every evening with him "working" on the airplane.  I really could help with some things, like stitching the Dacron covered wings, but I'm sure he put up with my assistance, hoping that I would love it as much as he did.

It worked.

My Dad finished the Stits Playmate in just under 2 1/2 years, the fastest time to date for one to be finished.  N6515 was the first to fly after Ray Stits flew the prototype.  The Playmate made its first trip to Rockford, Illinois in 1969, coming home with a trophy. 

My Dad and I flew many more years to Oshkosh.  We had the airplane in parades, in malls, almost anywhere anyone invited us.  The folding-wing design made it easy for it to be transported as well as allowing it access to places where many other aircraft cannot go.

It had the engine updated early on to the Lycoming 150 hp, which gave it more power, and makes it quite a peppy little craft to fly.

Dad and I rebuilt the Playmate in 1990, giving it all new fabric, new interior, and new avionics.  This time I could participate much more fully, and my Dad and I had a wonderful time doing it together.   What a joy it was to receive the first Paul Poberezny Founders Award for classic custom homebuilt in Oshkosh in 1991. 

While flying with my Dad all those years, I got my license, graduated from medical school, completed my psychiatry residency, got a Skyhawk, and missed Oshkosh only twice in all those years.  I then married the most wonderful man, Art, a pilot, who lives in Badger...on SD19. 

My Dad died in 2002, and I want a place for the Playmate to live forever. 

Charlotte Andersen, M.D.
Badger, SD

Make & Model:  “Jeep” was designed & built by Ralph Burton
Year: 1941
N number:  N41664
Donator:  Burton family
Location:  stored in Rob Burton’s hangar at Custer County Airport

jeepInformation from Rob Burton (Hill City, SD) September 2008:  The “Jeep” was designed and built by Ralph Burton in 1941 at the old Alliance Airport, Alliance, NE.  Ralph was killed in the crash of a Beech Staggerwing near Philips, SD, on March 27, 1944, while carrying airmail between Cheyenne, Pierre, and Rapid City.  The plane was lashed to the top of a car and moved by Ivan Ellis from Alliance to Spearfish, SD.  The single seat plane had a Continental A-40-4 engine (salvaged from a wrecked Taylorcraft), 18-foot wingspan, and 12-foot overall length.  The parasol wing was adapted from a Taylorcraft airfoil and had modified Friese ailerons.  Newspaper accounts from 1941 report, “The plane takeoffs and lands at 55 miles per hour [and has reached speeds as high as 120 miles per hour].  Its cockpit is so small that the instrument panel is only a few inches from the pilot’s face, and the seat is recessed to permit the pilot to wear a parachute.”  The plane was called the “Jeep” after a popular air racer built by Art Chester.  Rob Burton (nephew of Ralph Burton) stored the dismantled plane in a garage for many years.  The plane was rebuilt for static display by Ivan Ellis in 1998-1999, and displayed at Black Hills Aero on Spearfish Airport in August 2002 at the time of the induction of Ralph Burton into the SD Aviation Hall of Fame.  

Inductees in the Aviation Hall of Fame and the Combat Air Crew Memorial

Two people were inducted into the SD Aviation Hall of Fame during ceremonies held at Black Hills Airport / Clyde Ice Field on September 6, 2014.

Steve Hamilton
    Before retiring from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife as a biologist, Steve began his flight training and soon attained his private pilot certificate in 1991.  His affinity for the sciences made him a gifted and natural student.  In 1992, Steve was one of the founding members of the Yankton Regional Aviation Association (YRAA).  The club grew from 20 original members to over 110 members today.  Steve has been the newsletter editor since 1992 publishing 212 issues and 1,925 pages of minutes, flight news, safety information, and calendar of events.  He rarely misses one of the monthly potluck meetings that unify a diverse group of people who share the joy of flight.  The club’s annual fly-in breakfast has become a regular event in the Yankton community showcasing aviation and promoting Yankton’s airport to all its citizens and area pilots.
    In addition to the YRAA, Steve helped launch the Young Eagles Program.  Since 1992, Steve has presented elementary school programs and organized rides for over 2,700 kids.  Steve himself has flown 334 Young Eagles. 
    Steve was instrumental in helping the South Dakota Pilots Association grow by using his newsletter skills to promote the SDPA.  He is now the executive director of the South Dakota Pilot’s Association.  As Jake Hoffner said so well, “He is the glue that holds the YRAA and the SDPA together.
    Steve was inducted into the SD Aviation Hall of Fame on September 6, 2014.

Nettie Myers
    Nettie Myers went to nursing school, had three children, and chose to take flying lessons in 1976.  She remembers that she could not control the airplane and hated trying.  Nevertheless, persistent as she was, after 10 hours in the cockpit, she realized she could control the airplane.  She earned her commercial license and instrument ratings, flew for three years and was introduced to aerobatics by an instructor known for being very demanding.  When he asked her what her goal was, she said, “To win the nationals.”  It was March and the nationals were in September.  She trained like an Olympian, and in 1979, she flew at the U.S. Aerobatic Championship competition and became the first woman ever and first South Dakotan to win a national aerobatics competition in any category.
    In 1985, Nettie went back to college, became a CPA, and opened her own accounting firm.  In 1994, she became Secretary of the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources, a position she held for five years. 
    Nettie’s dad always told her to, ‘Shoot for the moon.”  While Nettie’s moon is now her home and family, she has continued to be active in general aviation and is current member of EAA Chapter 289 at Tea, SD.  She and her husband, Ed Ludtke host a fly in at Valley Airpark where they now have a home in Cotter, Arkansas. 
    Nettie was inducted into the SD Aviation Hall of Fame on September 6, 2014. 

One person was inducted into the Combat Air Crew Memorial section of the SD Aviation Hall of Fame during a ceremony at Black Hills Airport / Clyde Ice Field, Spearfish, on September 6, 2014.

    First Lt. James S. Nelsen was a B-24 pilot and flew 18 combat missions totaling 121.1 hours between October 21, 1944 and July 7, 1945.  Combat missions were over the Balkans, Rhineland, Po Valley, and Apennines.  He earned an Air Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster and the EAME (European-African-Middle Eastern) Ribbon with four Bronze Stars.  Nelsen passed away about 7 years ago and was buried in the National Cemetery at Fort Meade, SD.  He was nominated by his daughter Kay and son-in-law Tim Modde of Hill City, SD.

List of all South Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame Inductees

1991
Gen. Duane Corning
Gen. Joe Foss
Clyde Ice
Nellie Willhite

1992
Ole Fahlin
Lt. Col. Charles Gemar

1993
Clark Burton
Walden Lemm
Lt. Col. Howard Muchow
Edison Ward

1994
Vi Cowden
Luverne “Vern” A. Kraemer
Glen Levitt
Raymond Falon

1995
S. Russell Halley
Allen C. McDonald
Alvin Nelson
Bob Orr, Sr.

1996
Donald C. Golay
Clarence O. Hansen
C.Q. “Chuck” Mateer
Harley Rauch

1997
Ivan F. Ellis
James Caven
Cecil Ice
Raymond R. Kolb

1998
William Lee Blakeman
Clifford T. Bobier
Edward Canice Curran
Dale Glen Gregson

1999
Arnold A. Kolb
Dan Hawkins
Robert Burton
John Moodie
George Mortimer

2000
Clifford P. Adkins
Marvin L. Randall
Nathan Howard Kolb
Arthur J. Peterson
Clifford G. Raub

2001
Sam E. Dupris
Kenneth L. Holm
Col. Dennis Fitzgerald

2002
Ralph Burton
Homer W. Claymore
Vayl Oxford
D. Curtis Wik

2003
David R. Ellis
Delmar Deiter

2004
Gail W. Coe
Jon Paul Kolba
Curtis O’Dell Shupe
Burdette “Ben” L. Thompson
Leo F. Webber

2005
James E. Haggart
Gordon O. Malzer
Cecil O. Shupe
James R. Winter

2006
Orvil A. Anderson
William H. Green
Harry Hybertson
William Kepner   
Dorothy Lee
Phyllis E. Peterson
Bruce Schiltz
Albert W. Stevens

2007
Robert (Bob) W. Erlandson
Ola Mildren (Rexy) Rexroat
Helen Jo Severson
Thomas G. Walenta

2008
Lawrence E. Pravecek
Charles M. Summers
Paul Edward Yost

2009
Saxe Pitts Gantz
Colman L. “Buzz” Wagner
Col. John F. Welch

2010
Ann Ross Kary Anderson
Loes Monk Mackenzie
Irma Cleveland Weigel
Laurine Y. Nielsen
Maxine A. Nolt Wright
Marjorie Redding Christiansen
Margaret E. Ehlers Twito
Allen C. Tomnitz

2011
(none)

2012
Earle R. Geide
James Linsy Riggs

2013
Steven R. Thompson
Carol Sue Rayburn

2014
Steve Hamilton
Nettie Myers

List of all Combat Air Crew Memorial Members

A-G H-N O-Z
  • Adkins, Clifford P.
  • Allen, Donald L., Capt.
  • Alf, Herbert
  • Ambur, Arvid B.
  • Armstrong, Roger W.
  • Anderson, Eugene
  • Anderson, Kenneth D.
  • Anderson, Raymond D.
  • Anderson, Richard P.
  • Appel, Edward W. , Lt. Col.
  • Artley, Carvel R., Lt. Col.
  • Aughenbaugh, Hiland K.
  • Baker, Lyle C., Lt. Col.
  • Balhorn, Ray B.
  • Bauder, Edward H.
  • Beckel, Kenneth T., Lt. Col.
  • Becker, Clinton C.
  • Becker, Duane F.
  • Bell, John A.
  • Benson, Vernell C., Lt. Col.
  • Berg, Mark L.
  • Berg, Vernon L.
  • Bergner, Lawrence W.
  • Blaine, James W.
  • Blair, George W.
  • Blindauer, Richard
  • Block, Francis J.
  • Brockel, Donald D., Maj.
  • Broadhurst, Glenn
  • Bunjer, Alvern M.
  • Brunick, Sidney W.
  • Bunker, Robert A.
  • Burke, Charles H.
  • Burke, Virgil L., Lt. Col.
  • Bulot, Stephen, Lt. Col.
  • Caldwell, Alfred H.
  • Callan, Thomas H.
  • Callies, Richard C., Cpl.
  • Cannon, Charles J.
  • Carlson, Theodore V., Col.
  • Chambers, William Rex
  • Chard, Raymond, Lt
  • Charamza, Walter W.
  • Childers, Vincent L.
  • Childs, Charles, Lt. Col.
  • Christensen, Otto C.
  • Claymore, Homer W.
  • Clark, Francis R.
  • Clark, Robert W.
  • Clark, Theodore
  • Cole, Hilary, Lt. Col.
  • Cole, Hobart
  • Cole, John C.
  • Colombe, William C.
  • Cool, Lawrence H., Jr.
  • Corning, Duane, Gen.
  • Costain, Richard Y.
  • Crosswait, Bill N.
  • Crosswait, Robert L.
  • Dangel, Cyril J.
  • DeBoer, Raymond
  • DeJong, Lloyd
  • Deiterman, Arnold B.
  • Deiterman, Raymond B.
  • Divich, Chris, Gen.
  • Drayer, Wayne M. Maj.
  • Duba, Lyle H.
  • Dymock, Alfred, Capt.
  • Effenberger, Francis J.
  • Eggers, Myron D.
  • Eibart, Don C., Lt. Com.
  • Eisenmenger, James P.
  • Ellefson, Lloyd A.
  • Ellingson, Bertram E.
  • Ellington, Edward H.
  • Ellis, Horace C., Jr.
  • Engen, Don
  • Erickson, Dale R.
  • Ewert, Paul W.
  • Eymer, Quentin G., 2nd Lt.
  • Fetch, Robert M.
  • Fitzgerald, Dennis C., Col.
  • Flynn, John (Pat) P., Jr., Lt. Col.
  • Foss, Joe
  • Fridrich, Maurice E.
  • Gamet, Joseph (Joe) M., WO JG
  • Graham, James D.
  • Greeno, Harrison M.
  • Habeger, Joseph E., Col.
  • Hagen, Charles L.
  • Halley, S. Russell
  • Hansen, David H.
  • Hanson, Wendell H.
  • Harris, Cecil E., Capt.
  • Hauck, Zelton Piriet, Lt.
  • Havelaar, Marion H., Col.
  • Hayen, Charles V.
  • Hegvold, Arthur E.
  • Heinold, Raymond
  • Hemmingson, Andrew J.
  • Herrmann, Vern A.
  • Hettinger, William D., Capt.
  • Higgins, Frank M., Cpl.
  • Hill, Verlyn W.
  • Hoff, Henry G.
  • Hogen, Marvis T.
  • Holm, Kenneth, L.
  • Huss, Cyril F.
  • Ingraham, John D.
  • Irish, Donald, Col.
  • Jaide, Bernard S.
  • Jangula, Robert E.
  • Jensen, Milford K.
  • Johnson, Warren R., Col.
  • Keppen, Clare F.
  • Kempf, Albert F.
  • Kientiz, Donald V.
  • Kientiz, James
  • Klein, Verle, Rear Admiral
  • Klemme, Leverne H.
  • Kodet, Edward J.
  • Kolashefsky, Walt
  • Kortan, Laverne J., Lt. Col.
  • Krause, James, Col.
  • Kredit, Douglas G.
  • Kruse, Lawrence
  • Kvale, John H.
  • Labesky, Joe T.
  • Lagendyk, Nelson
  • Larkin, M.J. “Lark”
  • Lee, R. Neil
  • Lee, Randolph W.
  • Liebman, Robert C., Maj.
  • Lien, Thomas J., Col.
  • Linn, William K.
  • Lomheim, Louis G., LCDR
  • Lommen, Leonard H., Capt.
  • Loitwood, Howard S., Jr.
  • MacFarlane, Terrence
  • Magnoson, Morris, Lt. Col.
  • Mahrt, Martin H., Col.
  • Maltese, Frank P., 1st Lt.
  • Martin, Norman D.
  • Martin, Robert W.
  • Mateer, Charles
  • Mathieu, Reese A.
  • McGovern, George
  • McKelvey, Gordon W.
  • Mednansky, Edward
  • Melby, Roger, Maj.
  • Merfeld, Homer J.
  • Miles, James M.
  • Miles, Quentin C.
  • Miller, Dennis R., Maj.
  • Millette, Robert A.
  • Mills, Christopher, Capt.
  • Minehart, John P.
  • Minow, James W.
  • Morey, Kim, Capt.
  • Muchow, Clifford W., Col.
  • Muchow, Howard A., Lt. Col.
  • Mueller, Paul F.
  • Murray, Bazil
  • Mutcher, Arnold
  • Mulcahy, Paul R.
  • Nelson, Gary G., Col
  • Nelson, Herschel D.
  • Nelson, James R., Col.
  • Nelsen, James S., 1st Lt.
  • Nelson, Kenneth W., Lt. Col.
  • Nelson, Myron A.
  • Nelson, Rudolph E.
  • Nielsen, Howard R., Capt.
  • Nielsen, Niels Robert, Jr., 1st Lt.
  • Nielsen, Roy, Capt.
  • Northey, Clarence, Lt. Col.
  • Nupen, Harlan Clarence, Capt.
  • Nygaard, Eldon E.
  • Oberembt, James M.
  • O'Connell, John E.
  • O'Neill, Wally A.
  • Ohnstad, John V., Lt. Col.
  • Oliver, Thomas K., Lt. Col.
  • Olson, Kenneth C., LCDR
  • Oxford, Vayl
  • Placek, Melvin B., LCDR
  • Potter, Henry A., Lt.
  • Pravecek, Lawrence E., Lt. Col.
  • Raebel, James B., Col.
  • Rauch, Stanley, Col.
  • Raub, Clifford G.
  • Rayburn, Max S.
  • Rayburn, Richard L.
  • Reiser, Heine J.
  • Reynolds, Marc C., Lt. Gen.
  • Riggs, James L., Lt. Col
  • Ritter, Milton W.
  • Robbennolt, Wilfred C.
  • Robinson, John K.
  • Rollag, Stanley A., Col.
  • Root, Roger D., Lt. Col.
  • Roth, Elmer R.
  • Rustemeyer, John S.
  • Ryan, Lynus, 2nd Lt.
  • Sattler, Donald
  • Satzinger, Curtis H.
  • Savage, James W., MSgt
  • Schekel, Lorin E.
  • Schiefelbein, Dean J.
  • Schliesman, Bernard E.
  • Schilling, Robert C., MSgt.
  • Schilt, John L., Col.
  • Schmidt, Darwin L.
  • Schnider, Jesse
  • Schlomer, John C.
  • Schott, Douglas W., Lt. Col.
  • Schroeder, Kenneth A., Jr., Capt.
  • Scott, Melvin R., Lt. Col.
  • Seiler, Eugene R.
  • Severson, Robert A., Capt.
  • Sharbo, Walter J.
  • Sheldon, Benjamin M.
  • Sheppard, C. Oscar
  • Shoener, Donald P.
  • Shubeck, Fred E.
  • Skotvold, Selmer, Cap
  • Slocum, Robert R.
  • Smidt, Orville B., Col.
  • Smith, Donald G., Capt.
  • Snyder, Les, Lt. Col.
  • Stackelhouse, Sheldon J., Maj.
  • Summers, Charles, Maj.
  • Teachout, Gerald E., Lt. Col.
  • Tech, Laverne R., Maj.
  • Temple, Kenneth, Col
  • Thomas, Clark S., Maj.
  • Thomas, John P.
  • Thomson, Morris A.
  • Thune, Harold R., Lt. (JG)
  • Torness, Arthur L.
  • Torvik, Ober L.
  • Traupel, Jimmy J.
  • Tufty, Iver O., Br. Gen.
  • Uken, Leo E.
  • Vacek, Edward L.
  • Valder, Leo F.
  • Van Liere, David
  • Venables, Lloyd V.
  • Vetterman, Larry D.
  • Vick, Boyd
  • Waldron, John C., LCDR
  • Wales, Robert C.
  • Walker, Donald
  • Warne, William H.
  • Walters, Ralph W., Sgt.
  • Welch, John F., Col.
  • Wheaton, Dean C.
  • Whitley, Samuel J., Maj.
  • Wiebelhaus, Virgil D.
  • Wik, David W.L.
  • Williams, Terrence M., Maj.
  • Wilson, Maurice A.
  • Winstead, Howard E., 2nd Lt.
  • Yahne, Verne M.
  • Yoder, Raymond A.
  • Yoeman, Dale C.
  • Zachritz, Owen R.
  • Zeiman, Gilbert W., Maj.


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