Michael A.A. Hobbs
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Asheville - Michael A. A. Hobbs died on January 3rd 2014, in Mission Hospital as the sun was setting. He was born in Ponteland, Northumberland, UK, on September 6th 1930.
His main occupation was with the Royal Air Force (R.A.F.), an exciting and rewarding career that started on Bi-planes with the Durham University Air Squadron. He trained in Canada under the NATO training scheme, and served in many parts of the world, including Canada, Germany, Egypt, and Cyprus (Suez campaign).
Some of his proudest moments were flying the historic aircraft, the Spitfire and Hurricane, with the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, and leading the R.A.F for Her Majesty the Queen's 50th Anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force.
He was also on the 23rd Squadron, where he flew on MACH 2.3 fighters.
After the R.A.F., he joined Martin Baker Aircraft. He worked as Technical and General Sales Manager, under Sir James Martin, designer of the first ejection seat.
He was later head-hunted for the USA, moving with his family to Asheville on March 17th 1980, where he worked with Stencel Aero Engineering Corp.
Not ready to retire, he later became part owner of the United Emission Catalyst.
Mike enjoyed golf at the Biltmore Forest Country Club, and loved his tennis and friends at the Asheville Racquet Club.
He served for 30 years as an active member of the Arden Rotary Club. He was a founding member, former President, Foundation Chair, and multiple Paul Harris Fellow.
Mike is survived by his dear wife Pat, whom he loved and cherished for 56 years. He was very proud of their three daughters and their families: Belinda and Steve Littler, and their children Sapphire (17), Gabriel (14); Christine and Michel Le, and their children Charlotte (14), Samantha (13); Pamela and Patrick Jarvis, and their son James (4).
Mike had a great enthusiasm for the graduating students of T.C. Roberson, and was very involved with the selection committee for the upcoming scholarships to further their education.
A memorial service is scheduled for 3:00 pm Wednesday in the chapel of Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian. The family will receive friends following the service.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that a donation be made to the "Arden Rotary Foundation" (P.O. Box 268, Arden, NC 28704), for the Michael Hobbs Memorial Scholarship fund.
The memorial register is available at www.grocefuneralhome.com.
Published in the Asheville Citizen-Times from Jan. 6 to Jan. 7, 2014