David Wilson

davidwilsonIt is with great sadness that I report the untimely death of David Wilson of the Melbourne Gliding Club in a gliding accident at the South Island Regional competition in New Zealand. David was competing in a Discus 2C glider and on Tuesday 21 November, during the second day of competition, his glider impacted a ridge on the Hunter Mountain range near Lake Hawea. Paramedics were promptly helicoptered into the crash site but found David already deceased.

David was a most experienced pilot with over 4,300 hours and many years as a Club Instructor, GFA Regional Coach for the VSA and keen competition pilot. David was well known for his weather forecasting services to both State and National competitions and gained many friends throughout the GFA contest scene. In the past ten years, David was of great assistance to me in establishing the VSA Coaching Week at Horsham and the VSA Alpine Coaching event at Mount Beauty. I know that many pilots will have fond memories of their cross country and alpine flights with David who had so much knowledge and skill to pass on to participants.

In August at the VSA Annual meeting, David received the Presidents Award in recognition of his long service to both coaching and weather forecasting at competitions.

The New Zealand gliding movement have expressed their sorrow to myself and all GFA members and cancelled the following day of competition in respect to David.

We will await the report from New Zealand accident investigators but it is likely that it will take a deal of time before anything is available. Meanwhile GFA Operations are being kept closely informed by New Zealand authorities as investigations are progressed.

On behalf of all of us in the VSA I extend our deepest sympathies to David's wife Judy, his daughters, their extended family and broad circle of friends.

 

Ian Grant
VSA President
Wednesday 22 November