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Prue, Irving - Soaring Pioneer

Irv has long been recognized throughout the world as a pioneer in glider design. He was responsible for a long line of next generation gliders, enabling soaring enthusiast, like myself, to construct and fly his advanced high performance gliders.

We worked on many gliders together, but I would like to tell you about two of my favorites. The first one was a small all metal flush riveted single place high performance glider, named the Prue 215A, featuring a very low profile fuselage, thirty inches high at the wing juncture, which required a full reclining position for the pilot, "V" tail, and retractable landing gear. This glider built and flew in the late 1940 s in advance of its time. Which set the trend for the next generation of gliders coming out of the United States and Europe, and because of its unique design, was the most photographed by spectators and designers here and around the world. Resulting in the new low profile high performance gliders manufactured today, resemble some of the designs of the Prue 215A.

The second, was the Prue II A, built and test flew in the early 1960s, a high performance all metal, flush riveted two place glider, with a 62ft. laminar wing span, "T" tail, and retractable landing gear.

This home built glider accomplished many things in design and construction, most notably, was the three world records, three United States records, five state records, and many memorable flights of 400mi. or more.

All of this was possible because of Irv's ability to foresee the need for the next generation two place high performance glider. For those of us who knew and worked with Irv knew that indeed there was a very talented man among us.

Irv was proud of all his gliders, and was in the process of designing and building a light weight, (100 pounds total weight.) affordable glider, at the time of his accident.

He was a giant in his field, and will be missed by his family and friends here and throughout the world, and I will especially miss Irv, who for fifty two years, was my close friend.

Ed. Minghelli

Posted: 10/1/2001

Final Glide 

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