Tracy Forrest, who had served as president of both the Bob Hoover Legacy Foundation and Citation Jet Pilots Association (CJP), died of brain cancer on October 12. He was 70. The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association said Forrest would be remembered as a “philanthropist, an accomplished pilot, and a mentor to the next generation of aviators.”
He founded Winter Park Construction in 1974 and built that company into one of Central Florida’s largest construction firms before selling it in 2007 to his brother Jeff Forrest and three partners, according to the firm. While involved in his business endeavors, Forrest also pursued his passion for aviation, becoming an air transport pilot with numerous ratings, including single-pilot in several Cessna Citations, as well as seaplanes. He further logged time in a Ford Tri-Motor.
He combined his interest in construction with his passion for aviation in the development of the South East Ramp hangar complex at Orlando Sanford International Airport, his home base, according to AOPA. A desire to share this passion with others led to his establishment of an iFly indoor parachute flight facility in Jacksonville, Florida, AOPA added. He further launched similar projects in Las Vegas, Detroit, and St. Louis.
Over the years, Forrest had formed a friendship with Bob Hoover. Before Hoover’s passing in October 2016, Forrest partnered with Mike Herman to form the Bob Hoover Legacy Foundation and became its president. The mission, which was sanctioned by Hoover, was “to inspire future generations of professional aviators in all aspects of aviation and aerospace.”
In addition to the foundation, Forrest was a founding member and deeply involved with CJP. Those two organizations teamed up to establish scholarships for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Along with those activities, Forrest was involved in a number of organizations, supporting the Veterans Airlift Command, Corporate Angel Network, and the EAA Young Eagles program.