Bob Jenkins and Sam Gross

First Flight

Josh Maihle of Columbus still remembers the first airplane ride he ever took. “I remember I was just 6 years old and riding in the backseat of a small, yellow private plane,” says Maihle.

Bob and his wife, Jill — members of Consolidated Cooperative in north-central Ohio — own two small, vintage aircraft. “We own a 1947 Cessna 120 and a 1946 Piper J-3 Cub,” says Bob. “I also co-own a 1972 Cessna 172 with my son, Shawn.”

Jenkins has been flying for more than 50 years, ever since his father taught him to fly. He made his first solo flight at age 16 and earned his private pilot’s license in his early 20s.  

Roger Trump with airplane

Crop duster

Roger Trump, owner of Trump Aviation Inc. in rural Darke County, expects to be busy this year doing his part to support agriculture from high above farm fields.

“Some people mistakenly think flying across the sky and then swooping down over fields to deliver the payload is romantic or glamorous,” he says. “It’s grueling work, and the most important part is bringing the plane home in one piece. There is never an end to routine maintenance.”

Dave Shiffer poses with Champaign Lady in the museum’s hangar.

Flight plan

Of the more than 10,000 B-17 Flying Fortresses built during the World War II era, probably fewer than 10 of the iconic bombers are currently air-worthy.

It wasn’t long after the Liberty Belle left Grimes Field that Tom Reilly, who had led restoration efforts on the plane and brought it to Grimes Field, contacted the airport looking for someone to lead another B-17 restoration project. The Shiffer family jumped at the chance.

Dewey Davenport stands on the wing of a plane awaiting a passenger.

Fall fly-in fun!

Scattered across the rural landscape of the Buckeye State are hundreds of small, grass airstrips, their owners housing vintage airplanes in nearby hangars and barns. A private plane, even though dated, is not inexpensive to purchase or maintain; the pilots — both men and women — do so for one simple reason: their love of flying.

A truck pulls a small plane on a trailer outside of MMS Aviation.

On a mission: MMS Aviation

In the Christian mission field, it can be difficult, to say the least, to reach remote regions of faraway places such as Honduras, Haiti, Zambia, Papua New Guinea, or Mozambique. Aircraft play a vital role as missionaries deliver food, supplies, and the Word of God in a matter of hours or days to areas that used to require weeks to reach on foot.