Six new plaques for the aviation “walk of fame” on Sepulveda Boulevard in Westchester were dedicated recently at the Flight Path Museum in the LAX Imperial Terminal. Each honoree is credited with a significant contribution to the advancement of aviation.
Honored at the ceremony and luncheon were Gen. Kevin P. Chilton (USAF-ret.), NASA astronaut and former head of the U.S. Strategic Command; Iris Cummings Critchell, aviation educator and World War II Woman Air Force Service Pilot (WASP); the late Robert W. Prescott, founder of the all-cargo Flying Tiger Line; Frank Robinson, pioneer helicopter designer and manufacturer; Burt Rutan, aircraft and spacecraft designer; and the late Robert Six, airline industry innovator and visionary. General Chilton was featured speaker at the event.
Honorees were selected by the board of directors of Flight Path, a locally based nonprofit organization which operates the museum in cooperation with the airport’s Community Relations office. Addition of the new plaques brings the total to 51 since the program began, according to Flight Path President Rowena Ake. The new plaques are to be installed in the sidewalk on Sepulveda Boulevard in the Westchester business district north of LAX. Lori Keir of the Flight Path board and John Ruhlen of the Westchester Streetscape Improvement Association are coordinating the project.
The plaque project began in 1995 with ceremonies in Westchester. Dignitaries present included Flight Path’s honorary chairman, Maj. Gen. Charles E. Yeager, the first pilot to break the sound barrier. Presiding was Morrey Plotkin, longtime community leader, who originated the aviation walk of fame concept and garnered support for the project.