Gordon Baxter Dies At 81


While his hometown media in southeast Texas remembered Gordon Baxter as a “local icon” and “legendary radio talk-show host,” he was known to aviators around the world as the author of “Bax Seat,” his well-loved column that ran on the back page of Flying Magazine from 1971 to 1998. Baxter wrote about airplanes, the people who fly them, the airports where they live, the romance and adventure of it all. “We’ll all miss him,” Flying Senior Editor Tom Benenson told AVweb on Tuesday. “He was always a gentleman and always knew how to tell a story. … I enjoyed his work from almost the time I could read.” Baxter died Saturday in Beaumont, at age 81, leaving behind his wife, nine children, 16 grandkids, and 11 books. Since 1998, at Oshkosh the Bax Seat Award is given every year to the EAA member “who perpetuates the Gordon Baxter tradition of communicating the excitement and romance of flight.” A ceremony is held for the winner. Flying Magazine featured a tribute to Baxter in its June 2004 issue, and this week posted his funeral arrangements on their Web site. The September issue will feature much more about Baxter’s life and legacy. And if you’re not familiar with Baxter’s work, here’s a sample, just one of his hundreds of columns, chosen at random. In the June 27 “As The Beacon Turns,” AVweb columnist Michael Maya Charles will share his memories of working with Baxter.