Volunteer Spotlight

Our Volunteer Docents are the Heart and Soul of the Museum. Each month, one is featured for their contributions to our organization. 

Dee Hemmendinger
August 2019

 

One of Dee’s early careers was the secretary to the Contracts Manager at Sylvania in Santa Cruz, CA. One of the military products she remembers was called BatBoy, a weapon used in the Viet Nam war.

Dee and her husband Richard were married on July 3, 1970. They took a trip in 2001 to visit children and was told the Spruce Goose was in a Museum in McMinnville, Oregon. Richard passed away Jan 9, 2002. Dee moved from Arizona to Carlton, Oregon Dec. 7, 2007 Dee again visited the Museum theater in 2008 for a special event. An Astronaut was showing pictures and talking of his experiences while on the Space Shuttle. She met Sue Vergara and her husband Tony at this event and they invited her to visit the Air Museum to become a docent.

Much earlier, Richard joined the US Navy in January 1940 and was a radio/sonar man on the submarine USS Finback. On September 2, 1944 the Finback rescued then US Navy Lieutenant Junior Grade George Bush off the island of Chichi Jima. Bush’s aircraft, a TBM Avenger, was hit with anti-aircraft fire. Bush's two crew members were killed in the attack.

Dee has always been a docent in the aviation museum and with a group of 8 or ten, were called upon to support various special events. She became a 2nd Lieutenant in 2017 and in March 2019 was promoted to a 1st Lieutenant. In her new position as the Volunteer Coordinator for Special Events.

Dee has conducted tours of the B-17 and the Spruce Goose. Some of her favorite artifacts are the P-38, P-40, P-51, and the TBF Avenger.

Because of Richard’s 22 year career aboard at least 4 different submarines, both in WWII and the Korean war, it is likely that he communicated with the PBY Catalinas during anti-submarine patrols.

Dee really loves supporting the special events and the chance to meet the museum guests. Historic stories of the artifacts and replicas have given her an appreciation for the museum’s place here in Oregon. Now in her new position as the Volunteer Coordinator for Special Events, she will be increasingly active in supporting the museum. Thank you Dee for all you have and are doing.

 

Dan Goodrich
July 2019

Dan was educated at the University of Oregon, graduating with a degree in Russian and a minor in Bio Chemistry which set him up for a 5 year period in the United States Air Force. He spent time at pilot school in Laredo TX. Later Dan spent nearly 2000 hours instructing fast jet pilots on the T- 38 Talon aircraft. Our current “Flightplan Artifact of the Month” is the T- 38 Talon which hangs from the ceiling of the Space Museum.

Because the T- 38 flies at speeds of 300 Knots to Mach 1.5, special areas of air space were designated for training flights which included aerobatics and required the training pilot to stay within those allocated space limits and other aircraft to stay clear also. This training progressed from single aircraft to two and four aircraft groups in chase and formation display maneuvers.

Very fast pilot reactions were often called for and one example that Dan related was the following: With a full fuel load, heavy aircraft, single engine touch and go by the student pilot, they attained a height about 8 feet above the runway when the working engine stalled. Very quick reactions by Dan in spooling up the other engine saved the two pilots and the aircraft.

Dan experienced work with the Thunderbirds Display Team when they were testing the T- 38 as a replacement for the F- 4 aircraft because fuel consumption became a critical factor in air show costs. It was decided at that time that the T- 38 was not suitable. Later, in 1974, a decision was made to use the T- 38 and this led to the worst accident sustained by the Thunderbirds team in 1982 at Indian Springs Nevada. 

A group of four T- 38’s were executing a loop and when recovering at the lowest part of the maneuver at 400 MPH the lead aircraft flew into the ground. The other three aircraft followed (as they were trained to do) and all crashed, killing all four pilots. This led to the replacement of the T- 38 with the F- 16A Fighting Falcon. As Dan mentioned, the T- 38 has a very short wingspan, and relatively small control surfaces which make it more difficult to perform maneuvers such as a loop within a controlled height range as required in air show displays.

 

Bruce Silver
July 2019

 

Bruce was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. After high school he went on with a career in metal fabrication. He and his wife, Bette, semi-retired to Depoe Bay Oregon in 1990. New to the community Bruce and Bette got involved in community volunteering in a number of community projects, not the least of which, in 1999 Bruce was elected Mayor of Depoe Bay. Bruce's other interest include auto racing which include designing and fabricating racecar chassis’.

In 2004 Bruce and Bette became members of Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum (just Aviation at that time). On one of their visits in 2017, they noticed a flyer recruiting volunteers, Bruce signed up and became a docent at that time, and Bette joined the collections department. This last winter he decided to try his hand at restoration, now he enjoys floating between the two.

Bruce has taken on the task of building scale models of various rockets and other associated models for display in the Space Museum. His 1/144 scale models of the US Saturn V and the Soviet N-1 launch vehicles are on display in the Space Museum and were featured in a previous Issue of the Flightplan.

Bruce is now in the final stages of his most recent project, a historical display of space launch vehicles from the V-2 to the Saturn V in the 1/72 scale. Also included are models of the X-1 and X-15.

Bruce and Bette are also involved at the Kids Zone in Depoe Bay, an after school program offering alternative activities for youngsters K- 12. The Kids Zone has expanded to include all day care for preschoolers and open all day when schools are closed as well as a summer program. Bruce volunteers on Fridays afternoons for "hobby corner" providing a forum for kids to assemble plastic kits.

 

Alan Kellogg
May 2019 

Alan’s experiences with military service began in 1972 when he enrolled in the Aviation Reserve Officer Candidate program as a college sophomore. He graduated from Cal State Northridge in 1974 with a degree in Political Science, and after finishing officer training he was commissioned an Ensign in the navy. Sent to flight training his preference was to become a fighter pilot but the Navy had other ideas as they needed helicopter pilots. After training on the T-34B and the T-28 he transitioned first to the Bell Jet Ranger TH-57 followed by the TH-1 Huey and later to the Sikorsky SH-3D. He served in the HS-8 Anti- Submarine Warfare and rescue squadron aboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) for three years. He participated in two successful rescue missions, both involving sailors accidentally thrown overboard.

Alan then spent a year instructing at the naval air training command flying the T-28 Trojan after which he then served four years in San Diego with the HS-84 Anti-Submarine Warfare and rescue squadron. He was transferred to Naval Air Station Alameda with the C-12 Beechcraft Super King Air for VIP services and then the next seven years flying worldwide missions in the U. S. Navy’s C-9B Skytrain II. The C-9B aircraft was multifunctional in that it could be easily converted to transporting cargo only, cargo and personnel, or VIP status with all the required luxury accoutrements. This aircraft is similar to the EASM VC-9C Air Force II on display. One of the highlights of his career was a round-the-world flight in 1988 for two weeks transporting the Assistant Secretary of the Navy on an inspection tour.

While still in the reserves, Alan went to work for Northwest Airlines in 1989. Then in 1990 he was activated for Desert Storm and flew C9’s in the Middle East transporting supplies, equipment, and personnel. He retired with the rank of Commander in 1997 and was with Northwest Airlines when it merged with Delta Airlines in 2008. He then retired in 2011.

Alan has a son Michael who will be enrolling at University of Oregon in the fall of 2019. Alan’s favorite EASM artifact is the Spruce Goose, which he first saw in Long Beach. Alan also has a daughter Amelia living in Phoenix with two children.

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