VALPARAISO | Two longtime residents received lifetime awards from the FAA on Wednesday night and a packed house turned out at the Porter County Regional Airport to congratulate them on their honors.
Dr. Tom Cavanaugh, an orthodontist, was awarded the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award and Larry Bub received the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award, both for 50 years of service.
Cavanaugh said he started flying in 1961 as a hobby while in school to be an orthodontist.
“I always wanted to fly and have flown everywhere in the United States,” said Cavanaugh whose son is also a pilot for his own company, Air One.
Sam Heiter, FAA Safety Team program manager, said that Cavanaugh’s record is exemplary.
“He was nominated by his peers and has a clean safety record. What impressed me what not only his flying time, which is quite an accomplishment in aviation for a noncommercial pilot, but the friendships he has made in the industry,” said Heiter.
Cavanaugh was presented with his lifetime records, a certificate of award, a pin, and his wife, Arlene Cavanaugh, received a pin as well for her contributions.
Tim Sokol, another FAA Safety Team program manager, presented the Taylor Award to Bub and said that Bub’s expertise is such an accomplishment that he will now join only 2,000 other award recipients on a roll of honor in Washington, D.C.
“His expertise is quite extensive. He has 306 annual inspections from 1995 through 2009 and that’s a lot of planes,” said Sokol.
Bub also received his historical records, a certificate, a pin, and his wife, Lois Bub, recieved a pin.
To receive the awards, both Cavanaugh and Bub had to have records in good standing.
“Aviation is a team and we learn from each other,” said Efrain Arroyo, manager of the Flight Standards District Office in South Bend.