The National Business Aviation Association convention draws aviation’s elite and honors a few each year. This time, heartfelt kudos were laid on Bob Hoover as NBAA presented him its Meritorious Service to Aviation Award, its highest honor. A five-minute video included tributes from Clay Lacy, Harrison Ford, astronaut Gene Cernan and many others to explain why.
Airshow star Sean D. Tucker joined NBAA president Ed Bolen in the on-stage presentation to Hoover. In the video, Hoover responded by saying, “I never felt that I was any different than anybody else. I was just lucky enough to have been at the right place at the right time.”
Later, Hoover was right on time for his three-hour autograph session at the Shell booth, where he scootered in unescorted at 1 p.m. to the minute. And he held court all the way through to 4 p.m. to sign his iconic poster for fans young and old. This 92-year-old is still clicking on all cylinders.
Elsewhere at the show, an ad hoc theater previewed a 15-minute slice of the new documentary on Hoover’s life and times. “Flying on the Feathered Edge” is the product of Kim Furst, award-winning director and the skilled film editor behind Brian Terwilliger’s 2005 “ONE-SIX RIGHT” tribute to General Aviation and Los Angeles’ GA mecca, Van Nuys Airport.
Furst has invested three years in this, her fifth aviation documentary. She’s clearly a Hoover fan.
“He’s so charming and such a good storyteller,” she confided in a promotional video.
She says she strived to create, “An evergreen tribute to a man who has given so much… and inspired generations.”
“Feathered Edge” is also a tribute to our times through Hoover’s life from World War II to death-defying jet-age flight tests to dramatic public demonstrations of business aircraft reliability and capability. There’s plenty of flight test and air show footage attesting to “the greatest stick-and-rudder man that ever lived,” as Hoover was dubbed by Jimmy Doolittle.
The 82-minute work will be released on DVD Nov.17. Learn more at TheBobHooverProject.com.