Otto E. “Pete” Bartoe – honored in 2004
Pete Bartoe was born in Paris Island, South Carolina on April 5, 1927, and has been a stead-fast Coloradoan since 1944. He soloed in a J-3 Cub in Boulder in ‘44 and was licensed in 1945 and graduated from the University of Colorado in 1949 with a BS degree.
Pete first experience was working for Hughes Aircraft with the USAF Falcon missiles project and went back to the University of Colorado where he received a Master of Science (Mechanical Engineering) degree in 1954. Soon, Pete found (with others) the Ball Brothers Research Corporation in 1956 becoming their first engineer, later President, and in 1973 was the Chief Operating Officer. Ball’s major project was a stabilizing platform for space exploration. Pete also holds patents for remote and other innovations including underwater television and remote under-water exploration.
Pete returned to flying by restoring a de Havilland Tiger Moth, which he flew and won awards; and belonged to the International Aerobatic Club. He designed the aerobatic aircraft; the Skyote which he test-flew along with Brad Davenport (CAHOF 1995). Bob Hoover, world renown aviator, gave it raves for its capabilities.
In 1973 Pete founded Ball Bartow Aircraft Corporation which led to the production of the Jet Wing single-engine, swept-wing plane. With many innovations in the propulsion system which used engine output forced over the wing “vectored thrust” to assist in low-speed flight. It was tested at the Boulder Airport and flown in 1977; and now hangs in Wings Over the Rockies Museum along with his Skyote bi-plane.