Thomas R. Pierpoint
United States of America
Thomas R. (Ren) Pierpoint of Merion, Pennsylvania was a helicopter designer and developer. As a teenager, he made and sold airplane models to stores such as John Wanamaker to finance flying lessons. He got a job designing and testing aircraft, and during World War II, he served as a rotory-wing design and development officer at Wright Patterson Field in Ohio. He joined AHS in 1944. After the War, he went to work with Frank Piasecki at Piasecki Helicopter Company, which would eventually become Boeing-Vertol. He rose to become director of customer sales and service for Boeing-Vertol with responsibility for helicopter operations throughout the world. At the time of his retirement, he was the director of current programs.
Pierpoint received many awards and honors for his work, including the Award of Merit in 1948 and the AHS Fellow Award in 1998, both from the AHS International. He also received a commendation from defense minister of France for assisting in the French army helicopter combat operations. After retirement he served as a international consultant and as a volunteer for the Boy Scouts of America and the American Helicopter Museum at West Chester, Pennsylvania.
Mr. Pierpoint died of cancer on March 31, 1999. He was 77.
AHS Update: Vertiflite Spring 1999