#5 Steve “SkyKing” Salmirs
Steve Salmirs was born in Newport News, VA. His father worked as an aeronautical engineer for NACA/NASA at Langley AFB, and his mother was an elementary school and community college teacher. Year-round sports kept him busy through high school until introduced to an Aviation Explorer Scout Troop based at Patrick Henry Field where his aviation interests fully developed. Previously flying every chance he could, Salmirs put his aviation interests on hold for two years to pursue a spot on the wrestling team at William & Mary College in Williamsburg, VA. He later transferred to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL to complete his degree and attain his pilot licenses.
Steve earned his undergraduate degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL in 1980 and received a master’s in Business Administration in Aviation from the Worldwide Campus of Embry-Riddle in 2015. He began his career at Kennedy Space Center in Titusville, FL as a Calibration Engineer calibrating ground and flight equipment used on the Space Shuttles from 1980-1982. Flight instruction and charter flying continued to be a huge source of enjoyment outside of work. Salmirs was then accepted into the U.S. Air Force in 1982, earning his wings and selected to fly F-16 fighters. During his military service, Steve was based at MacDill AFB, FL, Nellis AFB, NV, Kunsan AB, ROK, with his final assignment at Laughlin AFB, TX as a T-37 Instructor Pilot.
Today, Salmirs is a commercial airline pilot. As a member of the GEICO Skytypers Air Show Team since 1996, he currently flies as one of the Lead Solo pilots. He is a CFII, NATA Formation Flight Lead, and is instrumental in designing, writing, and instructing the air show demonstrations each year. Also, he serves in a standardization and safety role to ensure procedures are updated and risks minimized. Having earned the call signs of “Animal” and “Chimp” through his military career, Steve has been designated as “SkyKing” by his current teammates in part due to his abilities and contributions to the squadron. Steve currently resides in Babylon, NY and Scottsdale, AZ with his wife Ann and daughter Rachael.