Sergei Sikorsky Brings Father's Pioneering Story

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Sergei Sikorsky Brings Father's Pioneering Story

June 18, 2007

  Hartford, Connecticut - PARIS AIR SHOW - Imagine if you could have been there the day Igor Sikorsky flew his first helicopter or watched him chatting about aviation with Charles Lindbergh and Eddie Rickenbacker in your living room. What would it have been like to fly around with Sikorsky, suit and tie, homburg hat plumped squarely on his head, in the first practical helicopter?

Visitors to the 2007 Paris Air Show will get a glimpse of those pioneering days of aviation from Igor Sikorsky's son, Sergei, in a special presentation, "Recollections of a Pioneer," at the United Technologies Stand, Hall 5, Booth B19-20. The presentations will be at 1 p.m. today, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

"It's really just the story of the development of aviation and the helicopter as seen through the eyes, thoughts and words of Igor Sikorsky," explained his son. Perhaps best known for developing the helicopter, Igor Sikorsky had had a distinguished aviation career before that. He built the first four-engine air transport while working in Czarist Russia and then a series of classic flying boats after coming to America. As a young man in Kiev he had tried to build a helicopter and failed, but the idea never left him.

Sergei says the thing his father was perhaps most proud of was not just the technology of the helicopter but its ability to save lives. "Were he here today, Igor Sikorsky would thank not only the many engineers and technicians who made the helicopter a reality, but the air crews who flew the helicopter and helped create this great machine," he says. "Without the skills, dedication and bravery of these men and women, my father's dream would never have become a reality."

Sergei Sikorsky remembers from his boyhood days Lindbergh, Jimmie Doolittle, Roscoe Turner, Eddie Rickenbacker and others visiting his father. And he himself flew in the first Sikorsky helicopter, the VS-300, with his father as pilot.

Sergei himself had a long and distinguished career at the company his father founded, Sikorsky Aircraft, retiring in 1992, but remains active as a company ambassador. Having traveled and lived in literally every corner of the world, Sergei is fluent in French, Italian, German and Russian as well as English.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacturing, and service. The company's long commitment to safety and innovation is reflected in its mission statement: "We pioneer flight solutions that bring people home everywhere...every timeTM." United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

Recollections of a Pioneer
Sergei Sikorsky
United Technologies, Hall 5, Booth B-19-20
Monday, June 18
1 p.m.
Tuesday, June 19
1 p.m.
Wednesday, June 20 1 p.m.

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