On July 16, 1965 the OV-10 Bronco was born! On July 16, 1965, North American Aviation test pilot Ed Gillespie took the first YOV-10A, the prototype Bronco, into the air for it’s first test flight in Columbus, Ohio. Amazingly, fifty years later the Mighty Bronco is STILL in active US military service, with two examples (modernized, ex-DOS OV-10G+ models) currently serving in Afghanistan in a special operations role under the Navy’s Combat Talon II program, as well as being used for military, firefighting, mosquito control, and private flying.
Celebrate the Bronco’s Golden Anniversary with Us at BroncoFest X!
Of course, the OV-10 Bronco Association (which shares it’s birthday with the OV-10, except that OBA was founded in 1998 years old) and the Forth Worth Aviation Museum (FWAM) aren’t going to let this historic anniversary just slip by unnoticed! BroncoFest X and the VMO Reunion 2015 will be held October 7-11, 2015, in Fort Worth, TX. ALL OV-10 lovers are welcome: whether you flew, worked on, built, designed, modeled, or just admire the Bronco, you’ll have a great time!
(In case you’re wondering why we are celebrating the birthday of the Bronco 3 months after it’s actual birthday… we used to hold our Bronco Fest Reunions on the weekend nearest July 16th… but if you’ve ever been in North Texas in mid-July (and survived), well, you’ll fully appreciate how much more comfortable October really is!)
Gone West: Legendary NAA/Rockwell Test Pilot Ed Gillespie
By Mike Whaley
We are deeply saddened to report that our friend Ed Gillespie flew west on July 9, 2015. Ed was well known to many in the Bronco world, and his tales of the test flights during the development of the OV-10 Bronco ranged from amusing to downright incredible. (How crazy? That’s Ed visible in the front seat during the infamous Bronco rough field landing tests. He told BroncoFest attendees that after this, they literally had to winch him out of the aircraft, which had no problems dealing with the torture!)
Ed Gillespie Obituary
Ed Gillespie, 86 of Gahanna, Ohio, a highly accomplished aviator and test pilot of many high performance military and civilian aircraft, took his final flight to heaven with an angel of God flying “right seat”, on July 9, 2015. Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan on July 28, 1928, Ed passed away July 9, 2015. He was preceded in his death by his parents Arthur and Rhea Gillespie, brother Art, and son Allan Gillespie. A licensed pilot at age of 16, he joined the US Navy at 17 and was accepted into the Navy flight training program. As a carrier based fighter pilot during the Korean conflict he flew many combat missions in service of his country. Passing on an opportunity to join the Blue Angels, he entered Test Pilot Training school where he graduated in 1956. He remained in the Navy Reserve where he retired at the rank of Captain after 26 years of additional service. In 1956 he took a position with North American Aviation, Columbus, Ohio, where he was employed for 30 years, retiring as Chief Test Pilot for Rockwell International. With over 15,000 flight hours primarily accumulated in short, intense flights in single cockpit high performance aircraft, in over 100, jet, rocket, recip, helo and turbo prop military aircraft, his record of aviation accomplishment during his long career is matched by very few, living or dead. Skilled, smart and courageous, he would often describe his most harrowing flight events later simply with: “piece of cake.” Aviation was his passion and the many people he knew that were involved with its history and operations, he proudly called his best friends. His very proud and loving surviving family is his ex-wife and lifetime dear friend, Janette; sons, Scott and Dan; and daughter Devon Hattey; grandchildren, Lauren, Ian and Savannah; and great grandchildren Henry and Cian. Ed’s deceased son, Allan, is surely meeting with his dad now to plan a new adventurous trip that they both so loved. Memorial services will be held at 5 p.m. Saturday, July 18, 2015 at the SCHOEDINGER NORTHEAST CHAPEL, 1051 E. Johnstown Rd. (at Beecher Rd.), Gahanna, Ohio 43230 where family will receive friends from 2-5 p.m. For a deeper look at elements of Ed’s life, please visit: www.schoedinger.com
Published in The Columbus Dispatch on July 12, 2015
One Tough Ride: The Story Of The OV-10 Bronco
Jami ‘Hollywood’ Clayman’s OV-10 Documentary Is Now Available!
We are thrilled to announce that all the filming, researching, and producing is done and OBA member Jami “Hollywood” Clayman has finally released the most excellent film: One Tough Ride: The Story Of The OV-10 Bronco(The title pretty much explains it!)
You can learn more about this 42 minute film, view and download film clips and interviews, and purchase it on DVD at http://www.ov10film.com/.
Check it out! Buy a copy! Buy TWO copies! Just do it!
There are many, many fascinating stories relating to Broncos in some way. They range from the true accounts of those put in incredible situations by the horrors of war, through your standard “And there I was” tales so often told by pilots, through downright comical adventures that are too bizzarre to accept as anything but real. We hope to share the best of these kinds of stories with you here.After you read these, you may wish to read more in such books as A Lonely Kind of War, Cleared Hot, and The Rescue of BAT 21. See the Books and Videos pages for more information on getting ahold of these.
If you have a Bronco-related story to share, or additional info about a story already here, please send it to us!! Email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. (We’ll accept anything we can read, but plain text works best.)