Dan Leslie passed away

GyroRon

Former Gyro know it all
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I don't have much for details other than he passed away.

I met Dan when I was new to gyros back in 2001, he was always very friendly and knowledgeable. He brought gyros to the masses via his TV shows. He also was a flight instructor. Any of the old timers will remember him. RIP Dan

 

Abid

AR-1 gyro manufacturer
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My condolences. May he RIP
 

Doug Riley

Platinum Member
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Wow. I was stunned to realize how many of the people in that video who are no longer with us. Dr. B., Bill Parsons, Dave Prater, Gary Goldsberry and now Dan himself.

Time waits for no one. Don't postpone all your fun. RIP Dan Leslie.
 

gyroplanes

FAA DAR Gyropilot
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Wow. I was stunned to realize how many of the people in that video who are no longer with us. Dr. B., Bill Parsons, Dave Prater, Gary Goldsberry and now Dan himself.

Time waits for no one. Don't postpone all your fun. RIP Dan Leslie.
Sad about Dan always very cooperative and helpful. Helped PRA and remastered my SnoBird Aircraft video. Dan will be missed.

Doug, The other day I was thinking about all the gyro guys that have left us. When I joined the Greater Midwest Rotorcraft Club (Chapter 18), I was the youngest member, now I am the oldest member by time in the club and one of the few left over 70 yo. Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana! Groucho Marx
 

Resasi

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Commiserations to family and friends.

He came across well in the video and it was most interesting to see how active the sport was in earlier times.

As Doug says, seize the time, it passes by quick, hadn’t heard the Groucho one Tommy.

Did go to Wing Commander Wallace’s last lecture to the Royal Aeronautical Society in London in 2013, he past a few months later. Another great character.
 

Chris Burgess

GYRO-CFI
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I went to Bensen Days one year without a gyro. Dan jumped right in and said "here, take my keys" and gave me the use of his tandem two-place. How great a guy is that !!! You will be missed.
 

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scottessex

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Dan was at our first fly-in here in Georgia, He was a great guy for sure and he will be missed for sure. Condolences to the family.
 

rwr

Just Plane Bob
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Dan was truly a great guy. I used to record all of his shows so I could keep them for a while and watch them often,... this was when I was just getting started in gyros so I found his shows really interesting. I met him several times at fly-ins,.. I'm glad I did.
 

All_In

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This is such sad news! Another great loss of knowledge and friendships to our very small community.
Please express, to his family, our love for Dan and what he meant to us.
 
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Joined
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Macon, ga
Hello all! I’m Brandi Leslie Caldwell, Dan Leslie‘s daughter. By luck, i came upon this forum when going through some of my dad‘s personal belongings. I was touched by the comments about my dad’s passing. I shared with my mom, and siblings as well. We were very moved. Dad would have been humbled by your kindness. Many didn’t know about my dad‘s illness. He was diagnosed with a rare brain disease called Corticobasal Degeneration. The cause of why one gets it is unknown. It’s terminal. If you have the opportunity, PLEASE research it. He was diagnosed with it approximately 2 1/2 years ago. His symptoms started approx 8 years ago. It was a long and frustrating journey. His symptoms worsened over time, and it was extremely difficult for him to communicate, and we all know that dad had the gift of gab, lol. That’s where I get it from. :)

Dad LOVED flying, and especially this community!

Blessings,
Brandi
 
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Kevin_Richey

Yamaha gyro...Oregon, USA
Staff member
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AZ
Brandi: What a great man to have as your father! I first started watching his cable show back in the 1990s. I think it was called something like RotorWing Sports Channel. I bought some of his VHS videos.

His sense of humor was even in his videos! Cracked me up @ times, even though I hadn't met him yet!
One of the funny moments was when he videoed a black gorilla walk up to a small gyrocopter @ the Mentone, Indiana airport (owned by the PRA), start it up, get the rotorblades to start spinning around w/ his hand, then hop into the seat & go take off! Glenn Bundy, the curator of the Archimedes Rotorcraft Museum on the airport grounds, was the culprit!

I got to meet him @ Mentone, Indiana @ one of the annual PRA conventions, in 2003. He was warm, friendly, & funny, all rolled up in one person! A man for humanity to look up to! I certainly do! I'm glad to have met him in real life. To this day, I wish I could have known him longer! I'll bet having him for your father was special!

Was he a retired air traffic controller?
How old was he when he passed?
Is he buried in a cemetery?
If in a cemetery, when I ever make it to Georgia, I'd like to pay my respects...

Do you have a photo or two of him that you could post here for us?
 
Last edited:
Joined
Nov 14, 2021
Messages
3
Location
Macon, ga
Brandi: What a great man to have as your father! I first started watching his cable show back in the 1990s. I think it was called something like RotorWing Sports Channel. I bought some of his VHS videos.

His sense of humor was even in his videos! Cracked me up @ times, even though I hadn't met him yet!
One of the funny moments was when he videoed a black gorilla walk up to a small gyrocopter @ the Mentone, Indiana airport (owned by the PRA), start it up, get the rotorblades to start spinning around w/ his hand, then hop into the seat & go take off! Glenn Bundy, the curator of the Archimedes Rotorcraft Museum on the airport grounds, was the culprit!

I got to meet him @ Mentone, Indiana @ one of the annual PRA conventions, in 2003. He was warm, friendly, & funny, all rolled up in one person! A man for humanity to look up to! I certainly do! I'm glad to have met him in real life. To this day, I wish I could have known him longer! I'll bet having him for your father was special!

Was he a retired air traffic controller?
How old was he when he passed?
Is he buried in a cemetery?
If in a cemetery, when I ever make it to Georgia, I'd like to pay my respects...

Do you have a photo or two of him that you could post here for us?
Thank you for the story, Kevin; and for the kind words. Dad did have sense of humor! His favorite thing to do with his kids/grandkids was to scare us all. He would just laugh. :)

He did have the RotorWing Sports TV on the Outdoor Channel. That’s great to know you watched it! My brother, Blake, is going to eventually upload all those videos on dad’s YouTube channel. We will let everyone know when gets that accomplished.

Yes, dad was an air traffic controller. He was one of the 11,000 or so who was fired in 1981 when they went on strike.
He was 71 when he passed On June 14th. Too young. His birthday is March 16th.
He is buried at Macon Memorial Park in Macon, Ga, and is buried next to his parents. That‘s nice about paying your respects. Please let us know if you ever make it here.

I do have photos. I would love to share them.
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Macon, ga
Some pics of dad…
 

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