Monday, April 04, 2011

Calvin D.Shoemaker 1923-

Calvin D. Shoemaker was born in 1923 at Pleasant Grove, Alabama. He enlisted in the United States Navy in 1941 and served in the Pacific Theater. Shoemaker received his commission and wings as a Naval Aviator in 1945 at the Pensacola Naval Air Station and became a torpedo pilot flying TBM Avenger aircraft. After completing his military service, Shoemaker joined the Douglas Aircraft Company as a test pilot and conducted flight evaluations of numerous propeller and jet powered aircraft. His flight test work in the Douglas AD Skyraider and A4D Skyhawk has been recognized as a milestone in completing the transition from propeller driven aircraft to jet powered aircraft in the low altitude, close support combat environment. Shoemaker completed the Naval Test Pilot School at the Patuxent River Naval Air Flight Test Center and became a Charter Member and Fellow of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots. He later became a key member of the Department of Defense / United States Air Force team that developed the revolutionary Global Positioning Navigation System. Shoemaker has accumulated more than 5,700 hours in fifty-seven different aircraft