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Aero Club

The Citadel’s Aero Club was organized in 1939 by Cadet Robert George David, who graduated in 1940. The first mention of the Aero Club in the 1939 Sphinx reads:

Although there were a number of cadets flying prior to this academic year, January 1939, witnessed the first official meeting of cadet flying enthusiasts as an organized group. This was brought about by a small group of cadets led by Bob David with the aid of Coach Tatum Gressette.

The Aero Club rapidly grew and at the end of the year there were over seventy cadets who had either obtained their solo license or were receiving instructions toward this end. Several had qualified for their pilot’s license, and two had been admitted to the U.S. Army Air School.

At the time of organizing, the sixty-five members elected Bob David as president. Cadet Billy Graham was elected vice-president, J.R. Wiley, secretary and treasurer, and Jerome Eichholz as publicity agent for the remainder of the year. These men succeeded in piloting the club to a prominent position on the campus, and interest was maintained at a high level. Coach Tatum Gressette consented to be faculty advisor, and it was not long before he was soloing.

The club has given evidence of its usefulness and has an active, interesting group of members who are determined to continue as a progressive organization.

The Aero Club was called the Flying Club in the 1960s and ‘70s. This file contains copies of materials mentioning the Aero Club and Flying Club from Citadel publications. For photographs of the Aero Club from ca. 1939 to 1941, see the Edgar Terrell Jr. photograph file, #643.

AF Aero Club

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