Established by EAA, the Sport Aviation Hall of Fame recognizes the accomplishments and contributions of aviation’s pioneers. Since 1953, EAA and its members have been leaders and innovators in all aspects of recreational aviation—from homebuilding to warbirds, vintage to ultralights, aerobatics to flight instruction. While their interests are diverse, EAA members share a singular passion for the freedom that flight offers, and through the contributions they’ve made, aviation as a whole has benefited. To recognize these contributions, each year EAA inducts a new class of members into its Hall of Fame, each of them nominated by their peers.
On Friday, October 16, during a special ceremony in the EAA AirVenture Museum’s Eagle Hangar, seven special aviators were inducted into the EAA Sport Aviation Hall of Fame, including EAA Warbirds of America inductee George Baker of New Smyrna Beach, Florida.
Baker is well-known for his restoration work on Beechcraft T-34s and for flying his aerobatic routine in the unique Curtiss-Wright R-3350 powered Hawker “Sky Fury.”
He is also recognized for his efforts to inspire future aviators, mechanics, and other warbird enthusiasts, by sharing his vast knowledge of aviation and restoration work.
George was born January 19, 1930, in Hawthorne, New Jersey, and has been flying since the age of 16. He soloed in 1946 while in the 11th grade in high school. At the age of 20, he started in the aircraft restoration profession, starting with a Culver Cadet.
Over the years George has won numerous awards for his T-34 N341GB, including Grand Champion Warbird at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2000, along with Reserve Grand Champion at the 2001 and 2002 Sun ’n Fun Fly-Ins. He was also awarded the Golden Wrench for his meticulous restoration work. In 2004, he won a Preservation Award at the Sun ’n Fun Fly-In.
George Baker has been a member of EAA Warbirds of America since 1974 and was a founding member and past commander of the Valiant Air Command. George has flown more than 100 different types of aircraft and has accumulated more than 20,000 hours of flight time.
EAA Warbirds of America congratulates George Baker for his induction into the EAA Sport Aviation Hall of Fame.
Past inductees to the EAA Warbirds of America Hall of Fame include:
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