Official Nebraska Government Website
Official Nebraska Government Website

NDOT, Division of Aeronautics
Mr. Ronnie Mitchell, Director

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Donald Boyd Fitzwater, born in Filley, Nebraska, was the youngest airport manager in Nebraska when he became manager of the Beatrice airport in 1954, at age twenty-three. He was a squadron commander for the Civil Air Patrol from 1949-1959. Fitzwater earned his private pilot’s license in 1951 and logged more than 4,000 hours. In 1993, the Beatrice Airport was named General Aviation Airport of the Year by the Nebraska Department of Aeronautics. Fitzwater helped organize the Flying Connestogas in 1968.                     

He is credited with inventing the Fitzhook, a tie-down for aircraft, and the Evaring, a recycled rubber weed control and erosion barrier for  runways. He also served as one of Nebraska’s first Weather Observers. Retired in 1999, he held the Nebraska record for managing the same airport for the most consecutive years. After retirement, he was appointed to the Beatrice Airport Authority, where he served as Chairman.


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