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Dick Rutan Donates Bust to EAA Museum

Dick Rutan
Dick Rutan with his bust, which will become a part of the Rutan Aircraft exhibit at EAA AirVenture Museum in Oshkosh.

September 30, 2010 — National Aviation Hall of Famer Dick Rutan flew his Berkut N268DK into Oshkosh’s Wittman Regional Airport Thursday to drop off a special donation for EAA’s AirVenture Museum: a bronze bust of himself. It will become a part of the museum’s large Rutan exhibit. He arrived in the early afternoon, with the 80-lb sculpture in tow, from the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio, where he gave a speech the previous evening, “Recalling the MISTY Years,” about his “Misty” combat tour in Vietnam.

“I took it to the Hall of Fame about 3-4 years ago,” he explained about the bust, which was created by the late sculptor, Judy Schwabacher. “But they had it in storage, so I thought I’d bring it to Oshkosh to be put on display. I should have brought it here to start with.”

Rutan is most famous for his flight with Jeana Yeager on the Voyager, the first-ever non-stop, unrefueled flight around the world. Beginning the morning of December 14, 1986, the flight lasted nine days, three minutes and 44 seconds and prompted President Ronald Reagan to present the pilots with the Presidential Citizen's Medal of Honor. EAA’s museum has a mock-up display of the Voyager where Rutan gives annual presentations at AirVenture.

Following an overnight stay in Oshkosh, Rutan expected to climb into N268DK and head back home to Mojave, California, where said he’s in a holding pattern for his latest endeavor: working to break the high-altitude balloon jump record. 

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