Western Sky Aviation Warbird Museum - Organization

Jack Hunter Col. USAF (ret) Col. 

Hunter brings decades of military and civil aviation experience and years of educational accomplishments including the founding of the Western Sky Aviation Warbird Museum.  

His military education and flight training began in 1966 at Mather Air Force Base, CA. In 1967 he was transferred to Chanute Air Force Base, IL, as Missile Launch Officer OBR 1821G, and later that year as Strategic Air Command Operational Trainer in Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA.  From 1980 to 1990 he was an Aircraft Maintenance Staff Officer, attended Air Command and Staff College, and the National Defense University in Washington D.C.  He served on active duty with the United States Air Force, Strategic Air Command, from 1966-1970. In 1996, Jack retired with the rank of “Full Bird” Colonel. 

From 1980-1996, Jack was recognized as Group Commander, 419th Fighter Wing Colonel, from 1994-1996; 1980-1994, Jack was Squadron Commander, 405th Logistics Support Squadron Lt. Colonel.

Jack received his Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering and Industrial Technology at Utah State University in June 1966.  He received his graduate degree in July 1991 at the National Defense University, National Security Management in Washington DC.  

In the past 30 years, Jack owned and operated Sun Valley Aviation FBO, Western International Jet FBO, was a  manager of Production Control at Hercules Aerospace, and served as a lead pilot for Rocky Mountain Healthcare Life Flight.  Perhaps his biggest success was when he became Director of Flight Operations at Utah University where he developed an FAA Part 141 Flight and Ground School.  There he hired, trained, and supervised flight instructors, and built a successful program enabling the university to contract with Major and Regional Airlines with countless opportunities .  Today, Jack plans to wrap up his professional experience as Manager of Flight Safety at SkyWest Airlines, where he manages the Aviation Safety Action Program. Jack hopes that one day he will be able to spend most of his time at the museum . 

Ron Edwards 

Ron Edwards has been with the museum since 2007.  He was raised in Simi Valley, California and now lives with his family in St. George, Utah. He has a A.S. degree from Dixie State College in Business and works in the Automotive Industry. In his spare time he enjoys volunteering at the museum restoring aircraft, flying and going to air shows with his family. 

Shane Hunter 

Shane Hunter was behind the yoke of an airplane since he was born, literally. He was flown by his father, Jack Hunter, home from the hospital in Salt Lake City to Hailey, Idaho. He has developed the love of airplanes and things associated with flying ever since. 

Shane grew up in Liberty, Utah and went to Utah State University where he graduated with a degree in Biology. At the same time he had the opportunity to earn his Private Pilots certificate and finally put all the years of practice to good use. After graduation, the enticement of making good money and supporting his good wife brought his feet back firmly on the ground. He went into the railroad materials business under the tutelage of a good friend. Over the course of 10 years Shane advanced from an operational assistant to the position of Assistant Vice-President of Operations. In 2008, Shane had the opportunity to continue his flying career. He earned his instrument rating, commercial pilots certificate and multi-engine rating. He left the railroad materials business and signed on with American Eagle Airlines as a first officer on an Emberar 145 Regional jet. He was sent to Flight Safety in Vero Beach, Florida for jet transition training and then back to Dallas, TX where he completed New Pilot Training. 

After some tough choices, Shane decided to leave the airline and come back to Utah to be with his family. 

Shane is currently lives in northern Utah and is back the railroad materials business. He still flies what ever airplane he can get his hands on and enjoys every minute of it! 

Richard Grinnell 

Raised in central California, central Montana, and southeastern Idaho, Rich spent his early years attending air shows with his father which fueled his passion for aircraft.  While studying aviation at Utah State University in Logan, Rich met Trevor Hunter, son of Jack Hunter who was the Chief Flight Instructor at the university.  At Utah State, Rich flew Cessna’s (152’s and 172’s), Piper Arrows, and Beech Travelair’s.  After graduation Rich moved to Pocatello, Idaho where he worked as a flight instructor and flew various freight contracts. 

By 2004 Rich was spending his summers flying an air attack platform for the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and various state agencies.  The flying was precise and exciting and Rich traveled across many western states.  Winters were spent flying charters and air ambulance in Beechcraft King Air B200s. 

With a growing family, Rich decided to look for more steady employment in order to spend more time with his family. With 1600 hours flight time in King Air B-200s, Rich was able to secure employment flying Lifeflight for Intermountain Healthcare.  At present, his work permits much more family time. Rich has maintained close contact with Trevor and Jack, allowing him to be actively involved in the Warbird Museum as well as providing the opportunity to give back to the community during both work and free time.  Rich, like his father, is passing the torch to the next generation.  Rich’s daughter is already driving the pushback tug that tows the aircraft to and from the hangar.  Even at her young age, she has become very knowledgeable about the aircraft.