Fundraiser celebrates aviation pioneers

September 10, 2017 by  

The 2017 Gathering of Eagles banquet is taking place next month in Lancaster. It is a fundraising event for the Flight Test Historical Foundation.

The banquet is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the first flight of the F-22 Raptor aircraft from Lockheed Martin. It took place on September 7, 1997.

Six test pilots from Lockheed and Boeing will be honored: Paul Metz, Chuck Killberg, Randy Neville, James ‘JB’ Brown, Steve ‘Hooter’ Rainey. and the late David P. ‘Cools’ Cooley. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet these men and hear some of their stories about the test flights.

The Flight Test Historical Foundation is currently raising funds to relocate the Flight Test Museum at Edwards Air Force Base. The organization also provides STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) scholarships.

VIP tickets are available for a Meet and Greet with Paul Metz, who was the first test pilot of the F-22 Raptor. Tickets are $50.

No doubt this event will attract some interest from Lancaster residents. Organizers may contact a local stationery printing firm to provide printed advertisements that can be inserted in local newspapers.

The Gathering of Eagles will be held at the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds HW Hunter Pavilion on October 21 from 4:45 to 10:00 PM. Tickets are $75 each. For more information about this event, contact Danny Bazzell at 661-916-3309.