The Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame will induct six notable First State aviation achievers for 2019.
The inductees will be celebrated at an Honors Banquet at the University of Delaware’s Clayton Hall on Nov. 2.
Founded in 2000 to commemorate outstanding service in military and civilian aviation, the Hall of Fame has now recognized, through 2018, a total of 115 current or former Delawareans who have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of aviation/aerospace in Delaware, brought singular credit to the First State in their achievements elsewhere and/or have shown gallantry in aviation in service to the First State and/or the nation.
The 2019 Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame Inductees are:
— James J. Connell: Connell graduated with honors from Salesianum High School in 1957 and the U.S. Naval Academy in 1961. He earned his wings in 1962 and flew A-4E “Skyhawks” in combat from the USS Ticonderoga and the USS Ranger. On July 15th, 1965, he was shot down over North Vietnam and held captive in Hanoi for 1,645 days before being murdered by his captors in January 1971. For his honorable conduct in captivity and his leadership with captive aviators, LCDR Connell was awarded the Navy Cross.
— Gaylan B. Crumley: Crumley has had a career in military and commercial aviation spanning 45 mishap-free years. He amassed more than 21,200 flying hours in military fighter jets and commercial passenger airplanes. The last part of his aviation career was as an FAA Flight Examiner, classroom instructor and simulator instructor for Flight Safety International in Gulfstream aircraft.
— Homer Reihm: Reihm, retired president and CEO of ILC Dover, was responsible for the development and marketing of the spacesuit chosen by NASA for the Apollo 11 moon landing on July 27, 1969. ILC Dover continues to be the sole manufacturer of Apollo, Skylab and Shuttle Space Suits and employs more than 400 people.
— George Schofield: Born In Manhattan, Lt. Col. Schofield joined the Army Air Corps and became a navigator with the 20th Ferrying Group. Serving in the 6th, 20th and 2nd Ferrying Groups he navigating B-24s, B-25s, C-47s to the Pacific; and C- 46s, C-54s, B-26s, A-26s and A-20s across South America to England and India. He was awarded the Air Medal when assigned to the 2nd Ferrying Group in Delaware. After 35 years with the New York Fire Department, where he rose to the rank of captain, he resettled in Delaware. He has been a Wilmington Warriors member for more than 20 years, and president from 1998-2000. He continues to serve as a guide at the Air Mobility Command Museum at Dover Air Force Base where he guides visitors of all ages through some of the same aircraft he had navigated almost 80 years earlier.
Donald W. Sloan: After graduating from the US Air Force Academy in 1973, Sloan flew more than 13,000 hours in the C141A/B Lockheed Starlifter and C5A Lockheed Galaxy, including combat support missions in Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. Since his 2006 retirement as the 512th Operations Group Commander at Dover AFB and utilizing his 1941 PT-17 Stearman and 1947 L-16 Aeronca Grasshopper, Sloan has flown hundreds of enthusiastic aviators, pilots and non-pilots, youngsters and “oldsters,” WWII, Korean and Vietnam war veterans.
Harry VanDenHeuvel: VanDenHeuvel’s aviation career began when he enlisted in the Air Force after the outbreak of the Korean War. During the next 21 years he served in maintenance at bases in the U.S., to include Dover and New Castle, and at Rhein Main in Germany, Saudi Arabia and Okinawa. After retirement, he was a member and leader of many aviation related organizations to include the Air Force Association, Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame, Civil Air Patrol and Friends of Bellanca Airfield. He flew his own airplanes and bought and painted a replacement airport beacon tower for Bellanca Airfield. He also served as director for aviation for the Delaware Department of Transportation.
For more on the Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame, visit dahf.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org or mail DAHF, P.O. Box 4303, Greenville, DE 19807-0303.