Sam Heiter, FAA Safety Team Program Manager for the Great Lakes Region was on hand to present the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award. This award is in recognition of pilots who have demonstrated professionalism, skill, and aviation expertise with at least 50 years of civil flying experience.
Monday night Dr. Doug Badell was honored by the FAA. Dr. Badell has been flying since joining with 29 other IU students in 1962 to purchase a 1947 Luscombe 8A and form a flying club. They charged themselves $5 an hour for the plane and $5 an hour for an instructor. Dr. Badell soloed on May 11, 1962 in that very plane.
In 1973 Doug purchased a 1967 Mooney and received his instrument rating in that airplane and in 1974 he bought a 1974 Bonanza, the airplane that he still owns today, having flown it some 3000 hours and 2 engines.
Dr. Doug Badell has flown from the east cot to the west coast and from Canada to Honduras.
As a member of the Flying Dentist Association Mission group Dr. Badell made 15 trips to Honduras.