Due to my article about the Hope Pedal Jet, one of our readers, Candy Taff Carr, got in contact with her cousin, Terry Fisher, who was the first pilot when he was around five in 1957. Terry then sent us some wonderful information and pictures.

Recently, I found myself in the Hope Library once again going back in time looking at a great community resource, the annals of “The Hope Star-Journal.”

Terry's dad, Don Fisher, was coach of the Hope Red Devils from 1952-57 and later became the Hope High School principal until 1960. Afterward, he went to Madison and became their guidance counselor.

From what I could gather from the old newspaper pages, Coach Fisher had some really good seasons while others were always promising toward the end. The writer for the 1952 team stated, “Basketball outlook is better.” The 1953 writer then said, “It could be the best team since Shepherd and Mize.”

The '54 team went 15-6 and the '57 team was 13-9. According to Terry, his dad was very analytic when it came to sports, often turning the sound down on the television while watching designed plays. I suspect that would be the primary reason for his teams reportedly improving and peaking at the end of each season. The amount of basketball material fluctuated in the paper from one year to the next.

Terry recalls wearing black pants, a white shirt, a black bow tie, and black/white saddle shoes. A large white jet pilot helmet was the last piece of his outfit to go on. The jet was black and white. He rehearsed with the cheerleaders. Game time, Terry would pedal his jet while leading the cheerleaders and the players down the ramp entering the old gym and would park at the center of the court. The atmosphere was similar to the movie “Hoosiers.” When the sectional was moved from Shelbyville to Columbus, he recalls being terrified pedaling the jet onto the huge gym of the Columbus Bulldogs.

When his dad had the team practicing, Terry would take a basketball to the stage of the gym. He would then shoot toward the basket on the side wall and chase the ball down. His dad would constantly have to remind him to keep the ball off the court. (I recall that exact goal due to being a teacher there.)

Terry graduated from Madison where he played football, basketball, and baseball. He then went to the University of Louisville where he played baseball, the same place where his dad played basketball and baseball. Terry became a pilot for U.S. Air Force for several years. Afterward, he became a corporate pilot and soon an American Airlines pilot retiring from that career after 36 years. Then, he was an air show and a movie stunt pilot for 13 years. Terry's favorite movie to participate in as a stunt pilot was for a series related to “Smokey and the Bandit.”

He has had eight airplanes over the years and still flies aerobatics at the age of 67. His plane now is an American Champion Citabria.

His dad died at the age of 91 after a career in education spanning forty years. When in Hope, the family lived on Washington Street. He recalls the Deiwert family being very helpful in providing childcare when needed.

While researching, I went back to 1950 in “The Star-Journal” when the Hope Red Devils were coached by Joe Foust. I found some interesting information about the Shelbyville Sectional from 1926-1950. A “Sectional Champion Summary” was at the very end. During that period of time, Columbus won 11 times, Shelbyville 8, Waldron 2, Fairland 2, Hope 1 (1945, 29-21 over Morristown), and Morristown 1. I thought it would be interesting to compute the average score of the winning teams and losing teams, 41 to 26. Undoubtedly, both averages would be higher for the next 25 years and so on.