Friday, August 04, 2017

Half Moon Bay Airport (KHAF) to be named in honor of Eddie Andreini

Edward August Andreini

Eddie Andreini is remembered as a man whose feet were firmly rooted in the Coastside soil. After growing up in a farm family, his construction company would help develop countless public and private projects on the coast. His head, however, was always in the clouds.

And it is his love of flying that will be the focus of ceremonies later this month to rename the airfield at Half Moon Bay Airport in his honor. The renaming is the work of the San Mateo County Public Works Department, which manages the airport, and comes with the full support of an army of Andreini fans all around the coast.

The county plans a ceremony to unveil the new name at 1 p.m. on Aug. 26 at the 3-Zero Café. The public is welcome to attend. Andreini was a regular at the café, which overlooks the airport’s landing strips.

After becoming enamored with flight by watching the local crop dusters, Andreini got his first airplane — a Piper Super Cruiser — at the age of 14. Over time, he would become an expert pilot with a particular love for vintage aircraft. He performed in World War II-era equipment like his Stearman biplane and his P-51 and Yak-9 fighters.

Coastsiders could often hear his aircraft as he practiced maneuvers that would quicken the pulse of any pilot. In 2013, he was inducted into the International Council of Air Shows Hall of Fame.

Andreini died a year later, at the age of 77, while performing maneuvers during an air show at Travis Air Force Base.

Air-show announcer Bill Vasilovich spoke of Andreini at his funeral. He described why the pilot was beloved by many in the community.

“He was a true gentleman, a barnstormer,” Vasilovich told the Review at the time. “He made people look up into the skies and smile.”

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