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Announcements 2009

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Thanks to Maribeth Keane

An Interview with Smithsonian National Postal Museum Curator and Zeppelin Stamps Expert Cheryl Ganz

Thanks to Rick Zitarosa

Donald E. Overs, Airshipman, Passes Away

Dear List Members,

Jon Radowski informed me today that we have suffered a serious and irreplaceable loss. 

Our dear friend LTA, ballooning expert and notable anti-IPT (Inflammable Paint Theory) expert Donald E. Overs took off on his "last flight" Tuesday, following a long bout with cancer.  ( If I am not mistaken, Don's age was 83.)

For those of us who spoke, corresponded and worked with this great man we got to know his methodical nature, careful attention detail and overall LOVE of the subject of LTA which stretched back to his boyhood and led him to Friedrichshafen and Konstanz to track down an aged, retired Hugo Eckener while Don was stationed in Germany as a young GI. 

Don subsequently was a founding "pillar" of The Wingfoot Lighter Than Air Society in Akron, as well as a driving force in their original subsidiary "Balloon Fliers of Akron, Inc." where he helped re-start the sport of GAS BALLOONING (with hydrogen mostly, in the early days!) in the 1950's.

For many years, I referred to Don as "The Godfather" because he would weigh and occasionally "create order"  on important issues as a prolific contributor to the Airship-List (particularly anything relating to ballooning, hydrogen gas or the HINDENBURG "Inflammable Paint Theory.")  I had the personal privilege of working with Don (along with Dr. Alex Dessler and Bill Appleby) in the 2005 SECONDS FROM DISASTER documentary regarding the HINDENBURG disaster. His last posting to the Airship-List was less than a week ago, regarding the new P-8 "Poseidon" patrol plane.

Don shared his experiences, knowledge and insight freely; he did not GOAD.  He did not HOARD.  He SHARED. Always in an informative, professional manner.

To sum it up, Don Overs was "the genuine article."  What you saw was what you got. The man was unique.....and as for his "final flight" my guess is that if it was anything like most of the flights he planned and executed,  he made the trip ON TIME and with plenty of gas and ballast to spare!

Fair winds and Clear Skies to this great man and dear friend who has left our circle.

Rick Zitarosa

Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Donald E. Overs Obituary

Thanks to Ken DeLacy

Airship Ventures Announces Historic Voyages Between San Francisco and Los Angeles

MOFFETT FIELD, CA. -- Continuing to celebrate its second season of operations, Airship Ventures announced today that in May, Eureka, the largest airship in the world, will make the first-ever passenger flights between San Francisco and Los Angeles by a Zeppelin. Bookending the Memorial Day holiday and a special week of Los Angeles tours, Eureka's first California Airship Cruises will allow passengers to enjoy spectacular views of California's Coastline and Central Valley as they sail in comfort 1,000 feet above the sights. Weather permitting, departure is scheduled for May 20 with a return on May 26.

Thanks to Guillaume de Syon

Lockheed Martin has won a $400 million contract to build a high-altitude airship demonstrator with radar technology so powerful it could spot a car hidden under a canopy of trees more than 300 km away.

The Integrated Sensor is Structure (ISIS) programme aims to replace several airborne surveillance platforms, including the Boeing E-3 airborne warning and control system (AWACS) and E-8C joint surveillance target attack radar system (JSTARS), with a single fleet of stratosphere-roaming airships.

Thanks to Pierre Gagnon & Johanne Pelletier

Longueuil, Quebec

To whom it may concern,

We are currently working with Daniel Gélinasone of the most respected producer in Canada, multi-awarded (men of the year 2008 in province of Quebec) General Manager of Quebec City 400th anniversary on a very innovative project which is the very first international Airship annual reunion in Canada. The purpose of this letter is to ask your support for this festival, called Festival Aéro-Scène Longueuil.

First let us introduce the project. As you probably know, Montreal St-Hubert Longueuil Airport was in 1930 the only base for the R-100 in Canada. At its first and only visit the R-100 attracted more than 1.5 million visitors. Our festival would first commemorate this unique event. Also historically the now merged city of Longueuil and Saint-Hubert are into the Air and Space industry since eight decades. Companies such as Héroux-Devtek, which built the LEM legs in the sixties Pratt & Withney which has 2 plans in the region and more recently the Canadian Space Agency (which directs the Canadiarm on the International Space Station) are established in the new Longueuil agglomeration. Longueuil is located on the South Shore of the Saint-Lawrence River, just across Montreal, with a population of around 3 millions.

Our project already has official support from mayor Claude Gladu, (mayor of Longueuil, the main South Shore city with its 380 000 habitants) the Symphony Orchestra of Longueuil, the Aérovision Foundation, Mr Jacques Spencer of Développement Économique Longueuil(an economic development agency) as well as leaders of the Airport of Montreal St-Hubert Longueuil and DASH-L.. What we need now, to enter a more commercial phase, is to show to potential investors the interest of the airship community.

The first edition of this great festival would last 4 days at the end of the summer 2010.  The main element would be the first international gathering of airships to be held in Canada. Year 2010 has been chosen, because, as we said, it would enable us to commemorate the 80 years of the arrival of airship R-100C in St-Hubert. This event was, for Canada, the most outstanding pride of first half of the 20th century.

The festival would allow public to visit, in an open day, the different enterprises dedicated to the world of aviation and aeronautics. Also a large part of the event would be popular and family oriented shows which would culminate each year by a symphonic and multi-media concert featuring the Symphony Orchestra of Longueuil and many other artists.  The themes of those manifestations would be the air world. Ultimately we want to use some Airship as screens for multimedia….

You will find the details of our request in appendix.
We hope to be able to count on your support; we will be expecting your answer at your earliest convenience. As you can see your interest in this project and its birth will be of a great help to put airships on the map for a greater public. We believe this festival can live and expand over the years, we would be very proud to count you in to be the founder supporters of this great event.

Thank you for your attention,
Please receive our best greetings.
Pierre Gagnon, Johanne Pelletier

Thanks to Alexandra Hall

Decal removal on Eureka (California-based Zeppelin)

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This site was created, written and is maintained by John Dziadecki 1995-2014. Images and quotes that are not the author's remain in the copyright of the originator. The information contained in this website is for educational purposes only. Additions and corrections are welcomed! Please send comments, suggestions and possible links to Last update: 4 January 2010