Aviation Unmanned Vehicle Museum

The AUVM in Caddo Mills is filled with more than 40 historic drones.

The Aviation Unmanned Vehicle Museum (AUVM) in Caddo Mills will host a presentation on one of the pioneers of drones, Reginald Denny.

The discussion will be led by Denny’s granddaughter, Kim Pucci, who wrote a book about her father, titled “’Prince of Drones’ The Story of Drone Pioneer Reginald Denny.”

Denny, who was British, was a gunner in the Royal Flying Corps during World War I. Later, in the 1930s, he opened a model plane shop and experimented with different designs, eventually winning a U.S. Army contract in 1940, for his radio-controlled target drone, the OQ-2 Radioplane.

While Denny was certainly a visionary when it came to unmanned aircraft, he was also a prolific film actor during the silent film era, and continued working in “talkies” as a character actor – often playing “comedic Englishmen” in American movies.

In a fun bit of trivia, Denny played the character Commodore Schmidlapp in “Batman: The Movie,” which starred Adam West.

Pucci’s book talk and signing will be from 1 to 3 p.m., on Saturday, Jan. 18, at the AUVM at 4246 N FM 1565 in Caddo Mills.

Even though the presentation is free to attend, those interested in going are asked to register in advance, either online through Eventbrite at https://bit.ly/35HqJHF or by calling 903-200-1245.

AUVM’s founder, Harold “Red” Smith is a retired lieutenant colonel with the U.S. Air Force, who worked in Strategic Air Command. Since retiring about 40 years ago, he has collected more than 40 unmanned aircraft.

Travis Hairgrove is a news reporter and features writer at the Herald-Banner and covers city government for many municipalities in Hunt County. To reach him outside of business hours, email THairgroveReporter@gmail.com.

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