Farewell Frank Robinson

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Farewell Frank Robinson

Postby hoverthrust » Mon Nov 14 2022, 01:35

TORRANCE, Calif., Nov. 13, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- On November 12, 2022 Robinson Helicopter Company bid a final farewell to its founder, Frank Robinson. Robinson, 92, passed away peacefully at his Rolling Hills, California home.

One of the most recognizable names in the helicopter industry, Frank Robinson was a pioneer, a man not driven by reward or accolades but by a vision that redefined the industry and forever changed general aviation.

Frank Robinson 1930-2022

Robinson will be remembered for the design and manufacture of the R22, R44, and R66 model helicopters. Known for their simplicity and reliability, the popular helicopters have a distinct profile and can be spotted easily and frequently all over the world.

Robinson's fascination with helicopters began in 1939, at age nine, when he saw a picture in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer of Igor Sikorsky hovering his VS-300 helicopter, an image that captivated Robinson and set the course for his life's work.

He earned a BSME degree from the University of Washington, later attending Wichita State University's graduate aeronautical engineering school. His career began in the late '50s with Cessna and continued through the '60s working for many leading aerospace companies, including Bell and Hughes. In 1973, at age forty-three, unable to interest any of his employers in the idea for a simple, personal helicopter, he resigned from his job at Hughes and founded Robinson Helicopter Company in his Palos Verdes, California home. Six years later, defying critics and overcoming enormous obstacles, Robinson was granted FAA certification for his two-place, piston powered R22 helicopter. The unknown helicopter company delivered its first production R22 in October 1979. By 1989, the R22 had gained a foothold in general aviation, opening a previously untapped market for private helicopter ownership.

In the early '90s, realizing the potential for a light mid-size helicopter, Robinson introduced the four-place piston powered R44. Orders for the R44 quickly piled-up and the company became a recognized player in the aviation industry. In 2010, Robinson once again expanded his line with the five-place, turbine powered R66.

Robinson's relentless determination earned him the respect of both colleagues and competitors. Affectionately called a rock star in certain aviation circles, Robinson retired in 2010 at age 80.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-release ... 76334.html
2nd Dan
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Re: Farewell Frank Robinson

Postby NZHelo » Mon Nov 14 2022, 06:09

RIP Frank
Chopper Guy
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Re: Farewell Frank Robinson

Postby Chopper Guy » Mon Nov 14 2022, 07:44

I never met Frank, but there was plenty of conversation around the lunch table today by the boys who had.

He sounds like he had a genuine sense of humour.

A name that will be long remembered by our industry.
Gunga Din
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Re: Farewell Frank Robinson

Postby Gunga Din » Mon Nov 14 2022, 11:39

I was privileged to meet him and have a short discussion, a very approachable guy, unassuming and no tickets on himself. A tail rotor specialist.
Arm, arm, I Gunga Din, the door slockt.
2nd Dan
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Re: Farewell Frank Robinson

Postby godfather007 » Tue Nov 15 2022, 04:30

A legend who created helicopters for passionate private sector aviators to fly and operate at a reasonable cost whilst up against the big guys who said he would not succeed.
His vision has allowed many thousands of pilots and operators the opportunity to live the dream of flying and making money at the same time with out going down the military/ Gov agency’s path.
Well done Frank!
Condolences to the family and friends.
There is always an option.

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