Gone West: Bob Heuer, First IAC President

EAA, the International Aerobatic Club (IAC), and the aerobatic community mourn the passing of Bob Heuer, who passed on Friday, June 16 after a long struggle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 79. Bob was IAC’s first President and served in that capacity from the group’s formation in 1970 until the summer of 1973. He subsequently served on the IAC Board of Directors and was IAC #2, right behind Paul H. Poberezny.

In the fall of 1969, Bob and several friends approached Paul to begin the formation of a new U.S. aerobatic organization. By the next spring a full slate of regional competitions was scheduled, the IAC championships in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin were organized, and several chapters were well on the way to being formed. Also established in the first couple of years were IAC’s achievement awards and Sport Aerobatics magazine.

Bob’s leadership was key to this early development, along with help and advice from a number of people, including Paul and Tom Poberezny, Jim Dees, Jim Lacey, Don Taylor, John Lumley, and others.

Bob served in the Marine Corps from the end of World War II through a tour in North China as civil war was breaking out there. He worked as a crop-duster, and then joined American Airlines for which he flew for 34 years. Bob flew in the “Unlimited” aerobatics class in the late 1960s and early 1970s and built/rebuilt several airplanes, including the Pitts Special (N442X) in which Charlie Hillard won the 1972 World Championships. Bob also flew in air shows until he lost his medical certificate in 1985.

Bob was laid to rest on Monday, June 19, at the Greenville Fairfield Union Cemetery near New Bedford, Illinois. A memorial fund in Bob’s name was established at Disciples United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 97, Mt. Morris, IL 61054.