Category Archives: News


The 40th anniversary of the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame awards ceremony that took place at the Fredericksburg Hospitality House on Saturday, November 3rd. This year’s inductees included Ron Gatewood, Evelyn Marshall and Governor Gerald Baliles.

Ronald L. Gatewood, Colonel USMC (Retired) served from the United States Marine Corps from 1964 to 1991 as a Naval aviator, retiring as colonial. After his retirement from the military, Ron established several aviation-related businesses, including SkyWorld Aviation, Tracey Corporation and Midland Development Corporation and managed the Warrenton-Fauquier Airport (W66). He was instrumental in transforming the small country airport into a robust aviation hub. Ron has demonstrated an unmatched spirit of service to the local aviation community in Fauquier County. He has volunteered his time and pilot skills through AirServ International, a Virginia-based global disaster relief organization. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Virginia Aviation Business Association. And he has been the standard bearer for the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society for the Warrenton Chapter.

Evelyn Marshall began her career of service on her 20th birthday, when she was sworn into the U.S. Naval Reserves as a Navy Wave in World War II. While assigned to the Navy Department in Washington, DC, Evelyn met Frank Marshall, and they were married in 1945. In 1959, they formed Airport Management, Inc., and assumed management of the Manassas Airport. Five years later, they were vital to efforts to ‘save’ the previous Manassas Airport, which ultimately led to the establishment/relocation of the airport to its current location. After Frank’s death, Evelyn has continued her interest and support of general aviation in Virginia, and has been both supporter and activist. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Virginia Aviation Trades Association. She also has been a long-standing member of the Flying Circus Airshows in Bealeton, Virginia, and a lifetime member of the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society. All-in-all, Evelyn has served Virginia aviation for more than 58 years.

Gerald Baliles, former Governor of Virginia in 1986 and under his leadership, the Virginia General Assembly passed what was until then the largest transportation funding package in Virginia history. The benefits of that program remain in place today. In answering questions of why he supported funding for small, General Aviation airports, he explained that these airports provide important access to the air transport system, no matter where they are located. He was tremendously supportive of the National Air & Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center and his direct involvement was integral to the Center’s creation. His personal efforts and intervention also helped ensure passage by the Virginia General Assembly of the legislation to enact The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. Governor Baliles worked hard to attract NASA’s space station headquarters to Reston, VA, and he was a strong advocate and pioneer in making Virginia an integral part of the nation’s space program. His leadership positively and importantly influenced the future of aviation in the Commonwealth, as well as nationally and internationally.


The Fredericksburg Chapter of the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society

The Fredericksburg Chapter of the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society held its inaugural meeting on Saturday, 17 November 2018 at Shannon Air Museum.

A total of 23 energetic aviation enthusiasts were in attendance to discuss objectives and plans for future meetings. The group included pilots, historians, museum docents, and writers, all of whom share a love for aeronautics. Over doughnuts and coffee, attendees reinforced the continuing need to collect and preserve documents, aircraft, aerospace vehicles and items relating to the history of aviation in Virginia. Surveys were distributed to all participants in order to gain insight into the best times for future meetings and possible outreach activities for the coming year. This first meeting recruited three new members for the VAHS and Fredericksburg chapter. Co-chairs Don Serio and Ray Gill are currently making plans for the next chapter meeting to be held first quarter of 2019. Time, place, and agenda are forthcoming.


While we are continuing to explore the best options to create our Headquarters’ library and archives on the Shannon Airport Campus, and support Shannon Air Museum, home of the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame, the VAHS remains steadfast and active. Our programs are moving forward, and we have some new programs in the works. We are very excited to report The Captain Earle Worley Scholarship awarded two deserving Virginia students $3,000.00 each to help in their studies in aviation and aerospace this Fall. We inducted three new members into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame in November and we are actively working on our Reed I. West Aviation History Project.

We greatly appreciate all donations we have received in our annual fundraiser. Your generous donations help the VAHS continue with its mission to inspire and capture the imagination by connecting people with the story of air and space in Virginia and to be the premiere association respected for inspirational programs in preservation, education and appreciation of Virginia air and space history for current and future generations.

You may use the form to send your tax-deductible donation.

Mail to:
VAHS, P.O. Box 7795, Fredericksburg, VA 22404

Pay on our website: or call the office, 540-376-3265.

Hall of Fame Inductees – Free Lance Star

Hall of Fame Inductees

Former Gov. Gerald Baliles was among three state residents inducted into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame on Nov. 3 for their contributions to the commonwealth’s aviation industry.

Sharing the stage with Baliles at the Hospitality House in Fredericksburg were Evelyn M. Marshall of Manassas and Ronald L. Gatewood of Fauquier County.

Marshall, 94, has been active in many aspects of the aviation business for more than half a century and, with her husband, the late Frank Marshall, developed and expanded general aviation businesses and facilities in Manassas, as well as Fauquier County, Winchester, West Virginia and Maryland.

After losing Frank in 1975, Marshall continued her role in general aviation, and retired last year from Dulles Aviation.

Worth noting, too, is that this World War II veteran (U.S. Navy WAVES) and mother of four decided to celebrate her 70th, 80th and 90th birthdays by skydiving, and vows to do the same to mark her 100th birthday.

Ronald Gatewood, 78, is a decorated Marine Corps pilot who, after 27 years in the service, including combat in Vietnam, “retired” to Fauquier, where he launched a new career in general aviation. He was cited for “transforming the small county airport into a robust aviation hub.

Gov. Baliles, also 78, of Charlottesville and Patrick County, was cited for service to aviation in Virginia in numerous ways, not least of which was a sustained effort to establish the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. That body, a joint effort of Virginia, Washington and Maryland, operates both Dulles International and Washington National airports from the Federal government under an 80-year lease.

During Baliles’ tenure as governor from 1986–90, he played a key role in projects that helped to advance Virginia’s education and transportation networks.

He was also chairman of the National Governors Association and a member of the Virginia General Assembly from the House of Delegates and the state’s Attorney General.

The former governor said he has been enamored of aviation since childhood and as a young man once intended to make a career in the field.

The Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame is an ongoing effort of the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society, now in its 40th year.

Artifacts of the Hall of Fame, including citations to each recipient with their photographs, are displayed in the Shannon Air Museum at Shannon Airport in Spotsylvania County. Ask to see them, if necessary.

Come visit us at: The Pilot House, 3381 Shannon Airport Circle, Fredericksburg, VA 22408
Mailing address: VAHS, Shannon Airport KEZF Campus, PO Box 7795, Fredericksburg, VA 22404-7795
Phone number: 540-376-3265 / Email: