Pitts Special S-1D Demo - Flown by Robert "Rooster" Schmidle, Lieutenant General, USMC Retired
Robert (Bob) “Rooster” Schmidle is a highly decorated retired Marine Corps Lieutenant General. A TOPGUN graduate with over 6000 hours of flight time, 4700 hours in tactical fighters - primarily the F-4 Phantom and the F-18 Hornet - and over thirty-five years of teaching
advanced fighter tactics. Bob planned and led the largest Marine Corps strike of Operation Desert Storm, on the first night of the war, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross with Combat V for Valor.
Bob was the Commanding Officer of Fighter Attack Squadron 251, “The Thunderbolts,” deployed aboard the USS America and was selected for an extraordinary second Operational Command of the Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 115, the “Silver Eagles.”
In addition to the F-4 Phantom and the F-18 Hornet, Bob has flown over 25 different types of military aircraft including the F-5, A-4, AV-8 Harrier, F-16, the British Typhoon, and numerous helicopters, including the V-22 Osprey.
Bob raced in the National Air Races in Reno, Nevada, flying his Pitts S-1D, and currently competes in International Aerobatics Club competitions in his Pitts S-2B aircraft. He can also be found on the airshow circuit in his Pitts Special with its easily recognizable and traditional red Pitts paint scheme. “Rooster” flies a high-energy show, performing maneuvers similar to those flown in tactical fighter aircraft.
As a Certified Flight Instructor, Bob teaches and trains pilots of all skill levels in his Pitts S-2B and Super Decathlon aircraft, flying out of Leesburg (JYO) Virginia.
Flying air shows, training the next generation of aviators, and connecting with experienced pilots allow him to give back to the world of aviation, which has meant so much in his life.