Sean Tucker To Retire
If you haven’t caught Sean D. Tucker’s solo airshow performance in his 40-plus years on the circuit, you have this year and next, and then he plans to retire. Tucker, who turned 65 this year, told the Dayton Daily News that he hopes to find a sponsor to launch a formation flying team as his next chapter in airshow flying. “I’m not quitting,” he told the Daily News last Friday. “I still love flying, but my gut’s telling me, you know, this airplane [the Oracle Challenger III] is going to the Smithsonian. What an honor. We want to keep her safe.” Tucker currently flies in about 18 shows every year, and also serves as Young Eagles chairman for EAA.
Tucker also founded the Bob Hoover Academy, an alternative-education high school program for at-risk teens, in his hometown of Salinas, California. It began in 2014 as Every Kid Can Fly, working with the Monterey County Office of Education, using aviation to inspire high-school students to strive for excellence in science, technology, engineering, the arts and math. Tucker said recently that he visited Bob Hoover, his mentor, last year, shortly before his death in October, and received permission to name the nonprofit after him. “Aviation is a metaphor for the deeper mission, to capture students’ minds, focus their energies and to cultivate success in the classroom and in life,” according to the nonprofit’s website.