The next meeting of the Huffman Prairie Aviation History Society will take place on Monday, October 3, 2016, at 7:00 p.m. All are welcome!
At this month’s meeting, Sarah Byrn Rickman will speak about WASPs (Women Airforce Service Pilots) and her books: WASP of the Ferry Command: Women Pilots, Uncommon Deeds and Finding Dorothy Scott: Letters of a WASP Pilot (view PDF flyer).
The meeting and presentation will take place at the East Interpretive Center, Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park at 2380 Memorial Road (intersection of State Route 444 and Kauffman Road), Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
All are welcome! There is ample free parking, and light refreshments will be provided.
You can view the upcoming schedule of meetings and speakers anytime at : https://blogs.libraries.wright.edu/news/outofthebox/events/huffman-prairie-aviation-history-society/.
Brief Biography of Sarah Byrn Rickman:
Sarah Byrn Rickman left her newspaper editor job in 1989 to write books. Consequently, Sarah produced her first award winning WASP novel, Flight from Fear, and then The Originals: The Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron of World War II.
The University of North Texas Press has published Sarah’s newest book, Nancy Love and the WASP Ferry Pilots of World War II, the insightful biography of the captivating but little known commander of the women pilots who ferried airplanes across the continental United States for the Army in World War II. Sarah was the recipient of the 2009 Combs Gates Award, given by the National Aviation Hall of Fame. The award is for her work in telling the human side of aviation through her books about the WASP. As part of the award, Sarah will write one more piece of the WASP story — a book tentatively titled The WASP of the Ferry Command. It will tell the story of all 303 WASP who were assigned to ferry airplanes for the Ferrying Division, Air Transport Command, U.S. Army Air Forces during World War II.
On November 13, 2009, she soloed a 1946 Aeronca Champ on a grass field at Red Stewart Field in Waynesville, Ohio, and she received her Light sport Pilot certification in July 2011.
The year 2016 has been a banner year for WASP author Sarah Byrn Rickman. Her sixth book — WASP of the Ferry Command: Women Pilots, Uncommon Deeds — debuted March of this year. A draft of WASP of the Ferry Command earned the 2009 Combs Gates Award from the National Aviation Hall of Fame for creative works that “reflect an emphasis on the individual pioneers, the people, who defined America’s aerospace horizons” — the human face of the mechanized outcome. Sarah’s seventh WASP book, Finding Dorothy Scott: Letters of a WASP Pilot — a touchingly personal story — is newly released.
And it doesn’t stop there. On February 20, 2016, the New York Times published Sarah’s OpEd, “The Female Pilots We Betrayed,” telling how the WASP “lost” the right to have their ashes laid at Arlington National Cemetery — on a technicality. That decision has since been reversed.
Sarah also won two awards from the National League of American Pen Women in 2016: the Vinnie Ream Award in Letters — for her creative essay based on her new biography, Finding Dorothy Scott; and the Eudora Welty Memorial Award for Fiction for her WASP novel Flight to Destiny.
Sarah’s books have won four other awards, including finalist in the 2003 WILLA Awards (named for Willa Cather), presented by Women Writing the West for her first WASP novel, Fight From Fear. Nine of her WASP articles have been published nationally, plus one about Army helicopter pilot Captain Vicki Calhoun who flew in the first Gulf War. Sarah also edits the WASP newsletter for Texas Woman’s University/the WASP Archives.