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Meet Our Members

Are you interested in joining our EAA Chapter? If so, contact Kathy Zancanella at kz@mlode.com or call (209) 736-2501.

We meet the 2nd Friday of each month at the Calaveras Airport (KCPU)


Larry Mersek

Larry Mersek­Motherlode EAA chapter 484 member; private pilot ASEL, ASES, 1500+ hours.
My first flight came on Sept. 25, 1967 from Oakland, CA. to San Antonio, TX. for USAF basic training.

 From that day forth I accumulated 3000 hours as a USAF flight crew member on 3 aircraft types.
Gunner--AC-119K “Stinger” gunships, 977 hours, 193 combat missions.
Loadmaster--C-141 “Starlifter” and Instructor Loadmaster­-C5A “Galaxy” Travis AFB, CA.

I became a private pilot on Apr. 9, 1973 with a checkride given by Dick Bridgeford, Bridgeford Flying Service Stockton, CA.  
Since that day I have flown a variety of light single engine aircraft and have a passion for classic tailwheel aircraft.
I presently own and fly a Van’s RV6 that I find great pleasure in flying whether
it be local or cross country and I enjoy giving “Young Eagle” flights for kids.


Mark Ohlau

Mark Ohlau has been a member of EAA Mother Lode Chapter 484 since 1979. Mark started flying when he was 16 and holds multiple certificates and ratings including ATP, Lighter Than Air, and A&P Mechanic. Currently, Mark is an MD-11 Captain for World Airways.
Mark and his wife, Melissa, own two aircraft, a vintage 1950 Piper PA-20 Pacer, and a 1994 RV-6 (bought flying).

Bruce Hedlund

Flying since 1970
20,000+ hours
ex-Christen Eagle owner/pilot
Current Cirrus SR-22 co-owner w/ Dave Pechan

Russ Harmuth

Russ and Shirley Harmuth


I'm Russ Harmuth, been involved in aviation since I was a kid. I graduated an apprenticeship at United airlines as a mechanic, went upstairs as a design engineering draftsman and moved to Calaveras County in 1969. Worked for PG&E for 7 years and decided to build a shop and put my A&P license to work, been doing old airplane restorations for 38 years now. I've restored many Stearmans including serial number one and a '31 Speedmail. I have built J-3 Cubs, Luscombes, Aeroncas, 2 Waco YKS's, a PT-19, PT-23, Pitts Special S2S, Great Lakes Biplane, Stinson 108, DeHavilland Rapide. The ultimate goal was achieved when I got the top award at Merced Fly-in with a 1928 Curtis Robin. I am currently getting close to finishing a full size Spitfire replica with power by Allison. More details on this can be found at www.spitfireaircraftco.com I currently have 18 builders world-wide and am getting ready to send a very large box with fuselage frames to a builder in Australia. I have added cockpit enclosures and baggage doors for the Stearman to my other website at www.russaircraft.com. Will sell in kit form or complete, ready to install.
I am the Technical Advisor for EAA Chapter 484.

Dave Pechan


I started to learn to fly in 1973, as a member of the Sharpe Army Depot Flying Club.  My brother- in-law, an employee of Sharpe Army Depot was a member of the club.  I was on active duty at Mather AFB, as a Sac Command Post Controller, 320 Bomb Wing.    I learned to fly in a 130hp Piper Cub.  As soon as I completed my private I began using my GI Bill Benefits to obtain: Commercial, Instrument, CFI, and CFII , and Basic Ground Instructor. 
After my discharge in 1975, I traveled to York Nebraska,  to train under Don Bair to become an Ag Pilot.  I flew my first season spraying in South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas.   I returned to California and flew a one year apprentice ship as an Ag Pilot.  I flew the Callair, Weatherly, Stearman, Piper Pawnee 235, and Ag Wagon.  I quit spraying in 1980.   I flew EMB-110 commuter airliners in the 1980 for a scheduled airline.
Today,  I am part owner of a Cirrus SR-22, my second Cirrus, which I love.  I have flown most single engine airplanes, and several piston twins, and have over 4,000hrs total flight time.

Joyce Farrell


My passion for flying developed early. I was a CAP Cadet during WWII at the Torrance Airport in Southern California. With a long hiatus at college, family and a teaching career in Calaveras County I decided to learn to fly. Carol Kennedy was my first instructor. I completed my Private License in July 1977 in a Cessna 150.
I joined EAA and with a fellow member built a Quikie. The composite technique was very interesting to work with, but the design did not suite me. So, I sold my half and graduated to a Cessna 150 and Cessna 172 accumulating 2000+ hours flight time over the Western U.S. And Alaska.
In 2003, I started an Avid Mark IV kit project and finished in 2007 with lots help from members of EAA Chapter 484.

Tom and Sara Ringlein

tom and sara ringleinst

Top and Sara with their Stearman.

Terry Campbell

Pilot and Sea Plane Instructor.

Rob Davids

Bruce Leister

I am Bruce Leister, I had my first flight lesson at 14 years old at Sky Sailing airport in a Schweizer 2-33 glider. I went on to get my pilot's license at 18 and owned a Ercoupe for a period of time.
I currently don't own a plane. You might asked "why am I a member of the EAA 484 chapter"? Because I found my tribe. The first function I went to 5 years ago was their Christmas party. I went alone not knowing what to expect. I sat next to a decorated World War II ace, Herb Ross, where else could I rub elbows with people of that caliber ? I also reconnected with a friend Wes who I had met in 1964 ( I was 10) when a school friend invited me to the airport to go flying with his family, small world. You can see Wes on the profile page of our EAA website.
The group was very friendly and I immediately was taken by their shared passion of everything to do with flying. I later learned they were school teachers, airline pilots, mechanics, salesmen, medical professionals and wine makers. Since joining the club, I have flown in an RV-6, Luscombe 8A, Waco Biplane and Taylorcraft BC12 all from the generosity of my fellow EAA members. I have also had the privilege to watch the skill, craftsmanship and patience of home aircraft builders taking parts, plans and materials and turning them into beautiful flying machines.
I currently fly from Attitude Aviation in Livermore and Springfield Flying Service in Columbia. The photo above was taken next to Attitude's Waco YPF5C in addition to that aircraft, I can rent a Citabria, Piper J-3 and AT-6 WWII trainer(when I am ready).

Kathy Zancanella

Kathy Zancanella

Charter member of Chapter 484. I began flying at old airport with Carol Kennedy in 1967 and got private and commercial SEL ratings in the 70’s. Added SES rating with Rob Davids at new airport in 1992. Bought T-Craft from Wes Ament in 1982. Became airport manager in 1989. Still flying the T-Craft.

The Wyatt's


Greg, Barbara, Haley, Hannah & Eric