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Vonard G. Ross - One Final Flight

I must go and fly next week over the Sierra Nevada. The flight will be the last material function on behalf of a fellow, who appeared in my life in 1975 as a student pilot. Vonard G. Ross was my most unusual student and he ended up being the dearest, most true friend in my life. He started to fly in the autumn of his life, but with determination, hard work and ever-increasing love of soaring, he progressed very quickly. His music and math teacher background helped him to become an excellent instructor of the Southern California Soaring Association.

For a former Explorer Scout Leader the unruly glider-guiding students and later on the Civil Air Patrol Cadets were merely a slight variation of instructional opportunity. Von was the hardest working member of the SCSA, and for many years the person, who took care of every imaginable problem of the then largest soaring organization of the Country. He crewed for me on four U.S Nationals and four Southern California Regionals, most of the time all by himself, handling a big heavy Open Class sailplane at age sixty. But to Von that was nothing because, after all, once upon a time, a few years earlier he backpacked the entire John Muir Trail! Next week at the request of Phyllis, his widow, and his son, Phillip Ross, I will scatter Von's ashes from the air over the Sierra Nevada.

Submitted by Elemér A. Katinszky

Posted: 9/1/1998


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