Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart

"Courage is the price that life exacts
for granting peace. The soul that knows it not, knows no release from little
things. Knows not the vivid loneliness of fear nor mountain heights where
bitter joy can hear the sound of wings. How can life grant us boon of living,
compensate for dull gray ugliness and pregnant hate, unless we dare the
souls dominion? Each time we make a choice, we pay with courage to behold
the restless day and count it fair."

Those were the words of Amelia Earhart
in a poem she wrote, entitled "Courage." Amelia Earhart knew a lot about
courage. Even when faced with impossible odds, she always had the courage
to try and overcome them. She had a never give up attitude that made her
so attractive to the public and took the science community by surprise.

Without that attitude, she would never have been invited to make her first
flight across the Atlantic ocean on June 3rd 1928. Because she had the
courage to be one of the only women pilots at the time, she was invited
by her future husband, George Putnam, to make the 20 hour 14 minute journey
across the Atlantic. Although she was just a passenger on the flight, she
was still promoted to celebrity status for being the first woman to cross
the Atlantic by plane.

Although her fame was set with her first
flight, she wanted to promote aviation in women. In 1929, she organized
a cross-country air race for women pilots named "the Power Puff Derby."

She also formed "the Ninety Nines" a now famous women pilots organization.

In addition to forming organizations for women pilots, she occupied her
four year break from flying with writing her first book, "20 hours, 40
minutes" on her first flight, became assistant to the general traffic manager
of TWA and served as vice president for public relations of the New York,

Washington, and Philadelphia Airways.

Amelia enjoyed public relations, but missed
flying greatly during her four year sabatical. In 1932, no one else had
ever flown solo over the Atlantic since Charles Lindberg, and Amelia set
out to change that. On May 20th, 1932, exactly five years after Lindbergs
flight, she set off for her 2nd journey across the Atlantic. She sucessfully
completed her flight, breaking several records. She was the first woman
to fly the Atlantic and the only person to fly it twice. She flew the longest
nonstop distance by a woman, and set a record for crossing in the shortest
time. After this amazing record setting flight, her name became known in
every household across the country as she won the Outstand Woman of the

Year award. She accepted the award on behalf of all women, demonstrating
to the world that women can accomplish almost anything.

For the next two years, she toured Europe
and America giving speeches to various groups and promoting aviation. In
autumn of 1934, her ambitious nature and love for flying caught up with
her again, and she announced to her husband, George Putnam that her next
venture would be a trans-Pacific flight flight from Hawaii to California.

This was her most courageous flight yet, as ten pilots had already lost
their lives trying to fly the same course she was about to set forth upon.

On January 4th, 1935, Amelia took off from Hawaii and later that day landed
in Oakland California to a cheering crowd of thousands. For the next few
months, she went back to promoting aviation through lecture tours almost

In later 1935, Amelia began to make plans
for what was to be her longest flight yet: around the world. On March 17th
of the same year, she took off from Oakland to Hawaii. After resting in

Hawaii, she set off from Luke Field near Pearl Harbor, but lost control
of her plane at takeoff. Although Amelia wasn’t injured, there was massive
damage done to her plane. She had to send it back to California for extensive

After such a major setback, she didn’t
give up, but rather waited almost two years before embarking on her journey
for the second time. On June 1st, 1937, she departed this time from Miami

Florida on a different route around the world.

Amelia made it all the way to Singapore
this time before problems arose. On June 17th, she fell ill with dysentery
that lasted for many days. Although weakened and exhausted from her illness,
she had the courage and perserverance to continue with the flight.

At exactly midnight, she took off for the
last leg of her journey. Twenty hours she made her last radio contact,