Photo Gallery: A Snapshot of 65 Years of Duncan Aviation
September 10, 2021
Donald Duncan learned to fly after World War II and then started buying and selling surplus government aircraft. This interest led him to become a partner in a Beechcraft distributor, Lang Aircraft, in Omaha, Nebraska and formed the idea to start Duncan Aviation. Donald sold hundreds of Beechcraft aircraft and he’s shown here with Vernon Lundell in 1958, in front of a Beechcraft Travel Air. Credit: Duncan Aviation
New HQ At Lincoln
Duncan Aviation’s second facility opened in Lincoln, Nebraska, at the new airport there, in 1963. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Donald Duncan provided financial backing to Bill Lear for the development of his famous jet. Duncan Aviation became an early Learjet distributor. After Bill Lear sold his company to Gates Rubber in 1967, Gates cancelled the existing distributorship but reinstated Duncan Aviation as the first Learjet authorized service center. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Father and Son
Robert Duncan, who had grown up in the business, became president of the company in 1968. Donald and son Robert are shown in this 1970s photo.
The company transitioned from being a jet distributor and resaler to an aftermarket service provider. It gained authorized service center designations from Citation, Astra/Westwind, Hawker and Falcon. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Avionics Near Me
Robert Duncan launched the company’s avionics satellite network to satisfy customers’ requests to have those services closer to their home bases. Today, that avionics network includes more than 25 locations in the U.S. A Duncan Aviation avionics shop shown here in 1989. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Battle Creek Addition
Robert Duncan started looking for someone who could run the daily operations and Duncan Aviation hired Aaron Hilkemann in 1996. Under Hilkemann’s leadership, the company purchased Kal-Aero in Battle Creek, Michigan, which gave Duncan Aviation two full-service MRO locations. Credit: Duncan Aviation
In 2007, Robert Duncan retired and his son Todd Duncan was named chairman. Harrison, Robert, Todd and P.K. Duncan shown here in 2013. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Duncan Aviation opened a third full-service MRO, in Provo, Utah, in 2010. In 2020, it officially opened its newly constructed facility there that includes 275,000 sq. ft of buildings, including a 53,000-sq. ft. paint facility. Credit: Duncan Aviation
Donald Duncan formed his namesake company, Duncan Aviation, in 1956—making this year the company's 65th anniversary. See a few moments from across the years—including its role in the early days of Learjet.