Phil Zollner Recounts JAC History
Phil Zollner submits the following bit of JAC history:
On the 19th of November 1959 I showed up in the meeting room on the ground floor of the Asbury Air Terminal on route 66 in Neptune to be welcomed into the Jersey Aero Club. At the time I was serving with the Army in the Counter Intelligence Corps. My sponsor was Frank Hall, and my unofficial co-sponsor was Jack Stazyn (an honorary member of the club to this day). Attached is the “yellow copy” of my receipt for the initiation fee, $35.00. The receipt also shows that monthly dues were $3.00, but the good news was that 2 of those 3 dollars could be credited to any flight made that month. So long as you were flying, your net monthly dues were a whopping $1.00.
I’m not sure of the extent of our fleet at that time, but I know it included two Aeronca Champs. My first checkout was in one of those Champs, 45C. The photo shows 45C just after I flew it (but this was sometime after the initial checkout). That’s me facing the plane with my back to the camera. I believe Jack Stazyn took the photo from inside another club plane. Yes. Our planes were hangared, though the old wooden structures had definitely seen better days and the rutted dirt track down to the grass area leading to the runway made taxiing risky though, for some reason, not prohibited. Our airport owner/manager was “Ike”, an amazing one-eyed old man whom we were told was the remarkable Commander Isaac Schlossbach who explored both the North and South Poles with Admiral Richard Byrd. He never spoke of his days as an explorer with the U.S. Navy.
All this happened 62 years ago last month. I find it incredible that over 1,400 of my 1,530 total hours have been with this amazing club.