Linda Hamer, IAC 7223 of Peru, Illinois passed peacefully at home July 6. A celebration of life service will be August 6 at Trinity United Church of Christ in LaSalle.
Linda was born in Peru on November 10, 1940, to Milton and Berth (Shoffner) Couleter. Linda married Gerald Hamer on April 1, 1961. She was a leader as a real estate professional in the Illinois River Valley. She passionately embraced activities she enjoyed most; flying being foremost. She owned and operated one of the first flight schools at the Peru Regional Airport, Aerial Enterprises, Inc.
Linda became an active member of IAC in 1980. By the 1993 annual, she had the privilege of having served the IAC in a leadership position for 11 years — the first eight as IAC secretary, followed by two years as IAC vice president and one year as the first female IAC president. During her two terms as IAC president, Linda focused on new members, broadening the scope of aerobatics to all, and promoting safety and education.
Her first experience as a volunteer began in 1980 at Fond du Lac. She has worked in every area of IAC contests, competed, and judged at many regional and national competitions. On a chapter level, she was an active participant of both IAC Chapter 61 and Chapter 1.
Her first aerobatic competition was in 1981 in a Citabria, followed by a Steen Skybolt and a Pitts S-2A. She owned and operated Aerial Enterprises Inc. at the Illinois Valley Regional Airport in Peru, Illinois, where she taught basic aerobatics and safety maneuver training in a Super Decathlon and later the Pitts S-2A.
In Illinois she also represented the IAC on the Illinois Aviation Forum, was chair of the Illinois Aviation Hall of Fame committee and worked with the Illinois Division of Aeronautics to promote aerobatics. She was inducted into the Illinois Aviation Hall of Fame in 2005.
Linda was a leader, pilot, sister, friend and mother. She will be greatly missed.