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Three People, One Aviation-Enthused Family
February 7, 2019 - The Shetterly Squadron is scheduled to make its debut at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh this year, but it will not be the first time AirVenture attendees have seen the members fly in Oshkosh. The team consists of Greg, Joe, and Jeff Shetterly. The group is unique in that not only is it a father and sons act, but they don’t fly the same type of aircraft.
“We’re flying three completely different airplanes, so especially when it comes to formation aerobatics, the airplanes act quite different when you’re maneuvering vertically. … It’s an interesting challenge to get three airplanes to fly well together,” Joe said.
Greg, EAA 535127, flies a DR-107 One Design, Jeff, EAA 727110, pilots an SNJ-6 called the Radial Rumble, and Joe mans an RV-8 making for one spectacular show spanning the spectrum from homebuilt competition aerobatic airplane to antique warbird. Depending on the air show and the air space restrictions, they have different routines, which consist of combinations of solo and formation aerobatics.
Joe has flown at AirVenture three times: heritage flights in the A-10 in 2011, in 2013 in his RV-8, and in 2016 he performed with Greg.
“The first time that I got to fly over AirVenture as a part of a heritage flight was mind blowing, to say the least,” Joe said. “I mean, I found myself in formation with aviation legends such as Steve Hinton and Kevin Eldredge and flying in formation with an F-86. I had a very distinct moment there that I’ll never forget where I’m looking down and seeing Oshkosh with everyone gathered. … I’m in this formation and I just couldn’t hardly believe that it was me and that I was getting to do that.”
Greg has more than 20,000 hours of flight time under his belt, which he accumulated over his 42 years of professional flying. He grew up listening to aviation stories told by his grandfather and uncle, so it was only natural to want to share the love of aviation with his family. Greg taught his wife, Micki, and their two sons to fly and now all three of them are flight instructors. Micki serves as the team safety officer and announcer, and flies her Citabria or Champ to shows as a support aircraft. In 2013, Jeff bought his T-6 and the family decided to start the beginning of what is now The Shetterly Squadron.
Joe said he is looking forward to performing with his dad and brother at AirVenture 2019. They hope their performance and family story will help generate interest in aviation for years to come.
“We are all passionate about aviation and flying and, specifically, about sharing it with the younger generation,” Joe said. “So, that’s really the point of everything that we’re doing here … to share a passion and to point out that across the spectrum of age and gender and types of flying … there’s something for everyone to enjoy.”