Read My Lips

Read My Lips

9 February 2009

Dear Jerry and all at the Living Legends of Aviation,

This is a time that we’ve needed our friends and family more than ever and this is a time that you were there and thinking of us. We deeply appreciate it, but mostly for our sweet Jetty boy.

Dee Howard and Paul Lips at the 3rd annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards.

Dee Howard and Paul Lips at the 3rd annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards.

Jett was the most wonderful son that two parents could ever ask for and lit up the lives of everyone he encountered. Your thoughts and prayers have meant so much to us and are a beautiful reminder of the inherent goodness in the human spirit that gives us hope for a brighter future.

With much love,

John, Kelly and Ella

LEGENDS ALERT: Aviation Legends, Henry G. “Hank Beaird” and Dee Howard have “flown west”. Services for Hank were held February 7th in Dallas. Services for Dee Howard were held February 19th in San Antonio, Texas. Memorials for these Legends may be sent to and we will forward them.

Dallas Morning News Obituary.

See Dee Howard’s biography.

Next year’s “Living Legends of Aviation Awards” will be held January 21, 2009 at the Beverly Hilton. Priority for tickets will be given to past attendees and earliest reservation wait list. To reserve your tickets email

My mother and father both grew up on farms in South Dakota, and there are many Great Depression stories on both sides of the family. One of our favorite stories is about Olie Anderson, banker in Canton, South Dakota, who ignored the Great Depression until Franklin Delano Roosevelt ordered a Bank Holiday in 1933. Anderson’s bank was solvent and he didn’t want to shut it down, especially on orders from a democrat, but he was a law-abiding American. So on the day decreed by FDR, Anderson locked the front door and put a sign in the window – “Closed by Roosevelt – Come around to the back door.” The back door stayed open all through the depression.

Today, business aviation is being asked to take a holiday; seems there are some that want to shut the doors on one of the most important tools of American Business. Business aviation is used effectively by successful business leaders; these are the people that are among the most important participants in American business. These are the business leaders that are needed to help create jobs, restart the economy, and reinvest in America.

Technology such as aircraft and Blackberrys are important tools in bringing to bear efficiencies and competitive advantages. Are we going to have a technological holiday and slow our recovery or are we going to be like Olie Anderson and press forward with our doors open and our chins up. As the government commits to rebuild our infrastructure like roads and bridges, will we use hand tools or bulldozers?

Will we learn a lesson from the last great economic challenge? Let’s keep the great spirit of American entrepreneurship flying!

Hank and Roslyn Beaird at the 4th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards.

Hank and Roslyn Beaird at the 4th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Awards.