Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Serge Martin

First flight of the first Belgian built F-16 (#FB-01) with SABCA test pilot Serge Martin at the controls and GD test pilot Neil Anderson riding in the backseat
Serge Martin - Belgian Test Pilot

Bernard Neefs 1930-1965

Bernard Neefs

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Billy L. Odneal 1925-2006

Billy Odneal was born on November15th 1925, in Los Angeles, California. He moved to Great Falls, where he graduated from Great Falls High School. After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, he returned to complete a degree in applied science from Montana State College. While at Montana State, he was co-captain of the 1946 fighting Bobcat championship football team, which in 1993 was inducted into the MSU Hall of Fame. He graduated from Montana State College on June 1, 1950, and was inducted into the U.S. Army as a 2nd Lieutenant, receiving the William Galt Memorial Medal.

His distinguished military career included service in three wars, World War II, Korea and Vietnam, where he served as the commanding officer of the 159th Assault Helicopter battalion, a part of the 101st Airborne Division. Billy's numerous citations and decorations included the Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross with bronze cluster, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Air Medal with four oak leaf clusters and the Army Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters. Billy was a lifetime member of the U.S. Army Aviation Test Board and holds the world speed record in a UH-ID Huey helicopter. As a member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots (SETP) a highlight of his career came in 1978, when he was a guest speaker at their annual convention in Brussels, Belgium. Billy retired in 1979.