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Wittman

Sylvester Joseph "Steve" Wittman was an air-racer and aircraft designer and builder. He gained his pilot's license in 1924 and built his first aircraft, the Harley powered "Hardly Abelson" later that same year. From 1925 to 1927 he had his own flying service, giving joyrides and during this time also became a demonstration and test pilot for the The Pheasant Aircraft Company and Dayton Aircraft Company. He also began his air-racing career, designing, building, and piloting his own aircraft, including Chief Oshkosh in 1931 and Bonzo in 1934. In 1937, Wittman designed and built "Buttercup". Based on that aircraft, he built the Wittman Big X in 1945, and the popular Wittman Tailwind series of homebuilts. During WW2 his Wittman Flying Service was part of the Civilian Pilot Training Program, training pilots for the Army Air Corps. Wittman was manager of the Oshkosh, Wisconsin airport from 1931 to 1969 - which is now named after him (Wittman Regional Airport). He died in an air crash in 1995.
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