In Memory of my friend Jim LeRoy - video & music by Jon Hammond at OAK Airport September 26, 2002 - http://www.HammondCast.com/ - Jim's Wiki:
Jim LeRoy (April 5, 1961 – July 28, 2007) was an American aerobatics pilot. A former US Marine Corps Scout/Sniper, he held a B.S. degree in Aeronautical/Aerospace engineering as well as an Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) license.
Initially flying solo performances, he gained a reputation with his highly energetic aerobatic displays. In 2003, LeRoy joined a daring and successful airshow troupe, the X-team, who referred to themselves as the Masters of Disaster. Their performance generally consisted of three pilots flying a simultaneous, chaotic, interweaving aerobatic display through clouds of smoke generated by circling jet-powered trucks below. After two seasons of successful airshows, an accident occurred on July 10, 2005 during a routine performance when Jimmy Franklin and Bobby Younkin collided in mid-air. Jim LeRoy was not involved in the collision and landed safely.
LeRoy was one of only eleven pilots ever to be awarded both the Art Scholl Showmanship Award (2002) and the Bill Barber Award for Showmanship (2003). He was also one of only a handful of full-time air show pilots in the world who actually made his living by performing for air show audiences.
LeRoy also held the following pilot ratings: single-engine, multi-engine, airplane instructor, helicopter, helicopter instructor, instrument instructor and aerobatic competency evaluator.
Wikinews has related news: Deadly crash at Dayton, Ohio air show
Around 2:15PM EST at the Vectren Dayton Air Show at the Dayton International Airport, LeRoy crashed his S2S Bulldog II, while in performance with the X-Team Codename: Mary's Lamb aerobatics team. Initial indications show that he was performing a 1/2 Cuban 8 and snap rolls on the 45 degree down line, but recovered too low to the ground to pull out. He hit the runway at 200 mph (although his vertical speed was only around 75 mph); the plane slid and burst into flames. LeRoy was pronounced dead in a military MEDEVAC helicopter while in transit to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, Ohio. The coroner's report states that LeRoy died on impact due to a fracture of his neck, but that he also was badly burnt. The National Transportation Safety Board ruled that the probable cause of the crash was the pilot's failure to maintain clearance from terrain.
Dayton Air Show Crash Kills Pilot - News Story - WHIO Dayton
Coroner: Pilot Died Instantly - News Story -
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In 2005, Smith was awarded the NEA Jazz Masters Award from the National Endowment for the Arts, the highest honor that the United States bestows upon jazz musicians. Also known as The Incredible Jimmy Smith Born December 8, 1925 Norristown, Pennsylvania, United States Died February 8, 2005 (aged 79) Scottsdale, Arizona, United States Genres Hard bop Mainstream jazz Jazz-funk Jazz fusion Occupation(s) Musician Instruments Hammond B-3 electric organ Smith's birth year is of some confusion, with various sources citing either 1925 or 1928. Born James Oscar Smith in Norristown, Pennsylvania, at the age of six he joined his father doing a song-and-dance routine in clubs. He began teaching himself to play the piano. When he was nine, Smith won a Philadelphia radio talent contest as a boogie-woogie pianist. After a stint in the navy, he began furthering his musical education in 1948, with a year at Royal Hamilton College of Music, then the Leo Ornstein School of Music in Philadelphia in 1949. He began exploring the Hammond organ in 1951. From 1951 to 1954 he played piano, then organ in Philly R&B bands like Don Gardner and the Sonotones. He switched to organ permanently in 1954 after hearing Wild Bill Davis. He purchased his first Hammond organ, rented a warehouse to practice in and emerged after little more than a year. Upon hearing him playing in a Philadelphia club, Blue Note's Alfred Lion immediately signed him to the label and his second album, The Champ, quickly established Smith as a new star on the jazz scene. He was a prolific recording artist and, as a leader, dubbed The Incredible Jimmy Smith, he recorded around forty sessions for Blue Note in just eight years beginning in 1956. Albums from this period include The Sermon!, House Party, Home Cookin', Midnight Special, Back at the Chicken Shack and Prayer Meetin'. Smith signed to the Verve label in 1962. His first album, Bashin', sold well and for the first time set Smith with a big band, led by Oliver Nelson. Further big band collaborations followed, most successfully with Lalo Schifrin for The Cat and guitarist Wes Montgomery, with whom he recorded two albums: The Dynamic Duo and Further Adventures Of Jimmy and Wes. Other notable albums from this period include Blue Bash and Organ Grinder Swing with Kenny Burrell, The Boss with George Benson, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Got My Mojo Working, and Root Down. During the 1950s and 1960s, Smith recorded with some of the great jazz musicians of the day such as Kenny Burrell, George Benson, Grant Green, Stanley Turrentine, Lee Morgan, Lou Donaldson, Tina Brooks, Jackie McLean, Grady Tate and Donald Bailey. The Jimmy Smith Trio performed "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" and "The Sermon" in the 1964 film Get Yourself a College Girl. In the 1970s, Smith opened his own supper club in Los Angeles, California, and played there regularly with guitarist Paul C Saenz, Kenny Dixon on drums, Herman Riley and John F. Phillips on saxophone; also included in the band was harmonica/flute player Stanley Behrens. The 1972 album Root Down, considered a seminal influence on later generations of funk and hip-hop musicians, was recorded live at the club, albeit with a different group of backing musicians... 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