Walt House’s love of aviation blossomed at an early age, when he and his friends used to lie in fields watching planes fly overhead, just before World War II.
He once hitched a ride on a neighbor’s airplane by saying his mother had “given him permission,” he said. Once they landed, he was in big trouble, “but it was worth it,” he said.
Now House shares his love of aviation with many at the Kansas Aviation Museum as the organization’s volunteer historian. His primary duty is overseeing the restoration of vintage planes and getting them certified with the Federal Aviation Administration.
“He’s one of those diehards that lives and breathes aviation,” museum director Lon Smith said. “We would be hard-pressed to find someone else who knows as much about Kansas aviation and, specifically, the early days.”
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Smith said that over the next few months, the museum will be making recordings of House’s presentations and his general musings on aviation to keep in its archives.
House shrugs off the praise, however, saying he is only one of “a whole bunch of old farts who come over there every week.”