From The South Ramp --Hank Bruckner:
|Article from the October 1997 edition of the GACH newsletter
Jim Kincaid was always larger than life--the kind of person that legends are made of. It would be difficult to name another aviator who has left an imprint on so many of our lives as Jim did. And not just as an aviator, for he was so much more than that. A father, family man, husband, friend, teacher, mentor, Jim lived life fully, but always put more back in than he took out. A man of integrity, Jim always knew where the line had to be drawn. And once drawn, you could not push him back over it. Jim wasn't dogmatic; he just knew what was right. Jim knew life, and was eager to share it with one and all. He had a huge sense of humor and was a master story teller. A truer friend would be hard to find. As most of you know by now, Jim died doing what he loved--performing in his Pitts Special, 73EW. He was flying his routine at an airshow at San Marcos, Texas, when 73EW apparently remained stalled after a series of snap rolls and impacted the ground. Mercifully, he didn't suffer. Jim was my mentor--he taught me how to teach, he taught me aerobatics, and he taught me how to be an aviator and not just a pilot. He didn't have to teach me how to laugh, but he sure gave me a lot of practice at it. His passing has torn a huge hole that can never be fully mended. But Jim will live on as an integral part of the many, many lives he touched. Our hearts go out to all those that knew and love him, but especially to Maritza and their family. In keeping with Jim's wishes, his ashes were scattered in both the aerobatic box at Ponca City, OK, and also at Dillingham Field. On October 10, about 60 of Jim's friends gathered by the UNICOM at Dillingham to say goodby. Eight of us were privileged to fly a missing-man formation (Seneca, CAP-10B, Extra 300L, Stearman, L-19, C-185, Pitts S-2B, Baby Great Lakes). After some poetry, prayer, reminiscing, and two beautiful songs by Clarence Kanae, Lei Ganang, and Steve Dahlen of our FSDO, everyone joined in a pot-luck. Jim's ashes were then scattered from Willy's Aeronca. I'd like to especially thank Jeff, Willy, Clint, Dan, Steve, Phil, and Bob for doing such a great job on the formation. One of the wonderful things about aviation is how those involved will rally around a fallen comrade. The Hawai'i aviation community did themselves proud for Jim. Jim, I know you are there, wings flashing in the light. Godspeed. (Memorial contributions may be made to the International Council of Air Shows Foundation, 715 South Beach St., Suite 102, Daytona Beach, Florida, 32114.)
Don't forget the joint GACH/FAA FSDO meeting on November 13th, from 6 - 8 pm at the Honolulu Community College to hear Dr. Ed Lu talk about his experiences in space. Ed,. a GACH member, flew on mission STS-84 to MIR in May of this year. He took a GACH patch with him into space, and will present it to us that evening. We may even have door prizes.
Be careful out there.