Veteran U.S. Army Helicopter Pilot to Address Aero Club Gathering

Col. Dave Sale logged more than 800 combat hours in UH1B Huey helicopters like the one shown here during his first tour in Vietnam. He will relate his experiences as a pilot during a presentation to the Sun Lakes Aero Club gathering on Monday, Feb. 26, beginning at 7 p.m. at the Cottonwood Country Club Lecture Hall. The public is invited to attend.

Gary Vacin

A retired U.S. Army helicopter pilot with more than 1,750 combat hours in Vietnam will be the featured speaker at the Sun Lakes Aero Club gathering on Monday, Feb. 26, at the Cottonwood Country Club Lecture Hall. The event begins at 6:30 p.m. with camaraderie, followed by the presentation at 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend. The speaker will be Col. Dave Sale who logged 820 combat hours in UH1 Huey helicopters during his first tour in Vietnam, followed by another 950 combat hours in AH1G Cobras during his second tour. Col. Sale served in a number of Army assignments before retiring in September of 1993 after more than 28 years of service. His first job after retirement was selling Apache helicopters worldwide for McDonnell Douglas, now Boeing. He was involved with Apache choppers in one way or another during the rest of his 16 and a half years as a Boeing employee. He now works for the Army Aviation Heritage Foundation in Mesa. He started the Mesa chapter in 2014 and has helped the organization grow to more than 300 members and 11 aircraft. His list of awards includes Master Army Aviator, Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters, Distinguished Flying Cross, 39 Air Medals with V Device, and various awards for his service in Vietnam.

Starting in November of 2023, the Aero Club changed its gathering date to the fourth Monday monthly from November through April, and its location to the Lecture Hall at the computer classroom at the Cottonwood Country Club. The club is open to persons interested in any aspect of aviation. Membership is not limited to Sun Lakes residents.

Future speakers and their topics are as follows:

March 25: Bruce Vantine on interesting information about the Lunar Module

April 22: John Philp talking about his 30-year career as a commercial pilot, including many years flying for JetBlue airline. He plans to retire from that company in March of this year.

For additional information on the Aero Club, contact Cannon Hill at 509-539-7857 or Gary Vacin at 480-298-7017.