It is strangely accurate to say that SuperCub.Org began with an airplane crash, but it was not the crash of a Super Cub. It was November 21, 1998. Having just received a pilot's license a few months prior, a thirty-seven year old pilot and his older brother set off for Faribault, Minnesota in a Cherokee 180 to bring his brother's daughter home from school for the holiday. A long chain of errors in judgement lead to fuel exhaustion and an off airport landing. The landing rollout through a fence row totaled the aircraft, but spared all on board. This moment caused the pilot to ponder in great depth if he should simply be content with staying on the ground.
A few days later over the Thanksgiving holiday, good friend, mentor, and Aviation Medical Examiner Bill Gilbirds, put the pilot in the back of a Bellanca Citabira and got him back up on the proverbial horse - an act that literally changed the course of history for the pilot.
The next two years involved almost continuous flying and flight training. Instrument, Multi, Commercial, and Flight Instructor ratings - and of course, a tailwheel endorsement in Bill's Citabria. It was the tailwheel endorsement, and the simplicity of the taildragger, that got the wheels turning about owning an airplane - one with the little wheel in the "right" place.
In early 2000, a Trade-a-Plane ad led the pilot to the Brookeridge Airpark in the Chicago Metro Area to look at a 1953 PA-18-105 Special. A ten hour checkout was required by the insurance, and in late February of 2000, the plane made its way back to Kansas City and its first home, Elton Field, just Northwest of KMCI. This is when the fun began.
Completely ignoring the advice of magazines, fellow aviators, and common sense, the pilot had purchased the plane without a pre-buy inspection. Things began to come up and he, being a computer guy, turned to the internet to see what resources were available for the Super Cub. Finding very little, in April of 2000 the domain name SuperCub.Org was registered. Early versions of the site were dedicated to a little bit of information about STC's and modifications, but mostly pictures of people going for rides in 197T.
As time progressed and more folks became interested in Super Cubs on the internet, a small cadre of folks was formed. In January of 2002, the first "Discussion Forum" was created. It very quickly became a communication center for pilots all over the world. It remains the epicenter of SuperCub.Org to this day with over 12,000 registered users and over 400,000 posts. As of February of 2016, close to forty-thousand unique computers are accessing SuperCub.Org each month. But, we are getting ahead of ourselves a bit.
Sometime in 2001, a small envelope addressed to the pilot arrived with a Yankton, SD postmark. There were no other markings. Inside was a one-hundred dollar bill wrapped in a hand written note saying, "I like what you are doing, keep it up". Later, the pilot learned that the money was sent by Dave Tunge, who will always be known as the "Grandfather of SuperCub.Org". This singular generous gift inspired literally thousands of hours of work developing SuperCub.Org into an interactive pilot community and became the basis for the way SuperCub.Org operates - "if you like what you see, send us some money, otherwise, the ride is on us".
2016 marks the fifteenth year of the SuperCub.Org on-line community. Laura and "the pilot" are both overwhelmed and greatly humbled by all of the incredible people we have crossed paths with because of SuperCub.Org and intend to be the stewards of this organization for a long time to come.
We value and appreciate your friendship and your support of us.