The 20th Annual Banquet Honored Pilots With Accolades and Fellowship
A special evening in the history of the Delaware Aviation Hall of Fame (DAHF) was held on Saturday, November 2nd, 2019, at the University of Delaware's Clayton Hall in Newark, Delaware. The center of attraction—six of the First State’s most distinguished people of aviation—were honored with music, decorations and ovations, all within the glamour of Clayton Hall with its colorful table decor, tastefully prepared dinner, and charming serving staff.
Hangar Flyin’ and Cocktails
The evening started off with a cocktail and hors d’oeuvre reception in Clayton Hall’s fireplace lounge. This has become an annual opportunity for aviation people to meet and catch up on “what’s new” and to greet the honorees. Background music was provided by the Delaware Air National Guard's Stardust Knights Jazz Combo. Photos, reproduction prints and models of U.S.aircraft were exhibited around the hall. A continuous video gallery of DAHF inductees was projected on a big screen. Plus, memorabilia of each 2019 honoree was on display.
The basket raffle was a huge hit with over fourteen baskets and prizes awarded.
Ceremony and Dinner
The celebrants were ushered into the Clayton Hall dining room. The Master of Ceremonies Roger Rodriguez officiated the ceremony by calling for the Delaware Air National Guard Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol Color Guard to open the ceremony with the posting of the colors. The Pledge of Allegiance was led by William Wilson, followed by the singing of the "Star Spangled Banner" by Laura Hullinger.
Following dinner, the Master of Ceremonies welcomed everyone and recognized the dignitaries who are present.
Following the introductions, DAHF Trustee Elliott Smith introduced the DAHF Youth Aviation Award winner for 2019, Anthony Ashcraft.
Presentation of Inductees:
The Emcee then called the honorees and their “wingmen", individually by alphabet, to the platform. (Following their selection, each honoree was assigned a member of the DAHF board to serve as his/her liaison. Fittingly, they dubbed themselves “wingmen").
Each honoree was escorted by their wingman to the platform, and introduced them to the audience. At the conclusion of each of their introductions, DAHF President Bruce Lambrecht awarded each inductee with a plaque and ribboned medallion in honor of their induction to the Hall of Fame.
The 2019 Inductees and their wingmen are:
James J. Connell (1939-1971)
Harry Van Den Heuvel
The evening concluded with remarks by the President, the retirement of the Colors, and singing of “God Bless America”.