Vale

Richard "Dick" Sims

Dick Sims

The Airtourer community farewelled one of the 'originals' on Friday 21 August 2020. Dick Sims passed away just after his 90th birthday and despite the COVID-19 restrictions his friends were able to attend via an internet video link.

 

Born in 1930 Dick was too young to serve in WW II but post war he served his National Service in the Citizens Air Force flying Mustangs, Vampires and Meteors. He loved, and was skilled, in aerobatics displaying the Vampire and Meteor at various airshows around Australia.

Dick joined Victa as Sales Manager and toured the country with test pilot Vic Walton wooing potential purchasers of the Airtourer with formation flypasts and aerobatics. Dick was a natural salesman and his enthusiasm for the Airtourer was a significant contribution to its success. When he addressed the Association Convention Dinner in 2003 he noted that after the Tariff Board rejected Victa's application for protection no one asked Dick if he could sell them at the higher price equivalent to the protection requested. Knowing Dick I'm sure he could have achieved it.

Dick had an adventurous streak which led him to such activities as driving through the USSR in 1964. Although based in Sydney he ensured his family was exposed to country life. His son Dom described a stay at 'Uncle Sonny's' farm Yarrandale and laying out kerosene lanterns as a flare-path for Dick to land in the Airtourer after dark.

Dick was quite the raconteur with his adventures and 'relaxed' approach to authority providing a rich source of material for his tales. He was heard to quote "don't let the truth get in the way of a good story", but of course not the story he was telling at the time. He was at ease with people which no doubt contributed to his popularity and success as a salesman.

Dick was part of the original group that founded the Airtourer Association at a meeting in Bankstown on 17th August 1977. He was also present at the first general meeting the following January at Griffith.

He is survived by Janette, his wife of 66 years, and sons Chris and Dominic.

Farewell Dick and thank you for your contribution to making both the Airtourer and the Association such a success.