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Nov 26, 2020, 11:18 AM
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Col Robert E Thacker


Col Robert E Thacker passed away quietly in his sleep on Wednesday 11/25/2020 at 102 years to rejoin his beloved Betty Jo. He is the most amazing person that I have had the pleasure to know over my life time. He was a true American hero who served his country and led by example throughout this life time. He inspired me to take a ride in a P51 Mustang and we had a beautiful conversation on my experience in it. The soaring community has last one of its icons. God speed Col I will miss your friendship.

11/30/2020 - Updated with more pictures
Last edited by Keith Kindrick; Jan 12, 2021 at 03:39 PM. Reason: Added new picture
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Nov 27, 2020, 11:51 AM
GonzoBorinquen's Avatar
Remenber when I was a young punk in the late 1970's. ( 22 - 28 years old). Had just bought a Cirrus glider from Sterling models and built it free flight. No $$$ for a radio system then. Had a growing family and more immediate needs.

I joined AMA more or less then and in one of the 1st magazines (Model Aviation or RCM do not recall which), I received, I met (symbolically) Col Thacker. In the magazine was a beuty of a glider built by Col Thacker. If I remenber the name of the glider it was something like "Baby Bowlus" or sounds like that. Beutifully made with a rounded front fuselage all done in small planked strips of balsa. A piece of art.
Since then have carried that image in my mind and soul and tried to copy, without success Col Thacker's building class.

May he rest in peace and his legacy be maintained in the next modelers generations.

Gonzalo, Toa Baja, Puerto Rico.
Nov 30, 2020, 04:28 AM
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jamesvanwinkle's Avatar
Oh wow, didn’t hear that yet. Going to miss that guy a lot. Saw him at his 102nd birthday party and he had never fully recovered from being hit by a car as he crossed the road oh his daily walks.

One of the craziest things that sticks with me, he asked me to hold him steady so he could fly after he had a round of chemo for some skin cancer. I’m thinking to myself, I’m hugging no man from behind no matter the occasion, but you can’t say no to that request from him. Held him steady by his belt loops as flying a tiny E-Flite ducted fan Mig-15.

He was an amazing person and always feisty in only the best way.
Nov 30, 2020, 04:38 AM
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jamesvanwinkle's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by GonzoBorinquen

I joined AMA more or less then and in one of the 1st magazines (Model Aviation or RCM do not recall which), I received, I met (symbolically) Col Thacker. In the magazine was a beuty of a glider built by Col Thacker. If I remenber the name of the glider it was something like "Baby Bowlus" or sounds like that. Beutifully made with a rounded front fuselage all done in small planked strips of balsa. A piece of art.
Since then have carried that image in my mind and soul and tried to copy, without success Col Thacker's building class.

Gonzalo, Toa Baja, Puerto Rico.
This is that model Gonzalo! Great memory from you.
Nov 30, 2020, 08:48 AM
GonzoBorinquen's Avatar
Jamesvanwinkle, thanks for giving an image to my memory. Due to space, I gave my collection of model magazines to my club. I think they threw them out after a while.

That is the model and the image I carry in my soul.

Thanks once more.

Gonzalo
Nov 30, 2020, 11:36 AM
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I was very young when he took the Bowlus out for a flight at Miles Square during the scale event at the LSF tournament. I too was very impressed with the design and how well it flew. Thanks for sharing that picture!

He also was the only person i know who had a straight Vee dihedral Hobie hawk.
Nov 30, 2020, 10:37 PM
Registered User
We have truly lost a great American Hero and I feel proud just to have known him and call him my friend . I especially enjoyed his salty humor and memory that would put an elephant to shame. He will be sorely missed and my heart felt condolences go out to his Daughter Bobbi.

High flight Col.

Ed Stewart


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