Bill Schoneberger, 83; U.S Aviation Historian





William A. Schoneberger, a prominent aviation historian and former longtime resident of Pacific Palisades, died on August 31 in Santa Barbara. He was 83.

Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on March 27, 1926, Bill graduated from high school in 1943 and earned an accelerated B.S. degree in naval science from the University of South Carolina in 1945. He served in the Navy as an ensign, then began a career that included working at the General Electric Aircraft Engine Division in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Lynn, Massachusetts and at Northrop Aviation in Los Angeles. He later started W.A. Schoneberger Communications...

... He served four terms as president of the Aero Club of Southern California, and in the late 1970s helped arrange with the estate of Howard Hughes to have the club display the giant Hughes Flying Boat, nicknamed 'the Spruce Goose,' in a large dome on the Long Beach waterfront. In the early 1990s, Bill headed a team from the club that arranged for the enormous wooden aircraft to be relocated to its present home in a new museum in Oregon. He also worked with the Hughes Estate to create the Aero Club's Howard Hughes Memorial Award, which for 30 years has honored lifetime achievements in aviation and aerospace.

In 1998, Bill was presented the aerospace industry's prestigious Lyman Award, given to him for 'Outstanding Achievement in Aviation Writing.' Last year, the Flight Path Learning Center at LAX, of which he was one of three founders, named its research library after him and filled it with a large collection of his documents and books...


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