Model plane enthusiasts take flight near Marion

Mike Fedor of Arlington, Texas, works with his model airplane during the Heart of America Free Flight Association?s event in Marion over the weekend.

Since 1957, Mike Fedor of Arlington, Texas, has been flying model airplanes.

?When I was a kid, my next door neighbor owned a hobby shop and it?s what got me started.?

For the last three years, he said he?s participated in the Heart of America Free Flight Association?s event in Marion.

?Coming to these events is like going to a family reunion where we get together,? he said. ?Some of these people I have known for 50 years.?

Pointing to a man walking near the runway, Fedor said, he?s been flying with that person for more than 50 years.

?He was the best man at my wedding.?

Fedor has always been around planes, too.

In addition to his model airplanes, he worked almost 40 years for Vought Aircraft in Grand Prairie, Texas.

?The plant (in Grand Prairie) opened in 1968,? he said, ?and at that time, Chance Milton Vought owned it and other locations.?

Fedor said the Vought?s legacy companies had some notable aircraft to include the VE-7 Bluebird, Kingfisher, Corsair and F-8 Crusader.

?Vought was known for building aircraft during World War II,? he said.

Now that he?s retired, Fedor said he likes to travel more with his little model airplanes.

?I have about 30 of them.?

His travels have taken him to several states to include Indiana, Oklahoma, Arizona, Kansas and more.

In Eager, Ariz., he said they flew model airplanes in an indoor football stadium.

Saturday afternoon, Jeff Englert of Wichita, another model airplane enthusiast, was a timer for Fedor?s flight.

?You don?t want to time your own planes,? Englert said.

Fedor was having a few problems getting his combustion engine to stay in the air, but on one of his late afternoon flights, he said it dove pretty far when the engine turned off.

It was also getting windy during the afternoon.

?Model airplanes need to be in calmer winds,? he said.

From Marion, Fedor said he will be in Perry, Okla., next weekend.

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