by Jack Bauder

Everyone dreams of living life to the fullest. At this year’s Dayton Vectren Airshow presented by Kroger, the meaning of that statement was clarified.

I watched an awesome aerial display as Sean D. Tucker took his plane into the wild blue yonder and performed five consecutive barrel rolls. From there, he whirled the plane into a giant corkscrew complimented loop, coming within 100 feet of the pavement. My first thought was that this guy had a death wish. My second was that his performance was wicked awesome!

As if Tucker’s incredible aerobatics weren’t enough, Chuck Aaron followed his lead by piloting his helicopter across show center — upside down. Once again I experienced a “twilight zone versus cool stunt” moment. Who on earth flies helicopters upside down? But I guess when you’re loaded with enough caffeine (Mr. Aaron’s helicopter flies for the Red Bull Air Force), you can do anything.

Melissa Pemberton eliminated any discrimination against the sexes by wowing the audience with stunts of her own in an Edge 540 aircraft; corkscrews, loop de loops, high G spirals, flips, you name it. It was insane!

To the spectators on the ground, the thrill of taking to the air was vicarious but the awe was totally real. Those who dream about living life on the edge (but not too close), had their fill at last weekend’s Air Show.  A show like this just goes to prove that the sky is the limit.