Year End: Blue Skies Jerrie Mock

Jerrie Mock passed away peacefully in her home in Florida on September 30, 2014. She will be missed by many, including family, friends, and fellow aviators. Those of us promoting Jerrie Mock’s story are honored to have had the opportunity to know her, and are comforted, in a small way, to have brought Jerrie the attention she so deserved, albeit on the 50th anniversary, for her record setting flight as the first woman to solo around the world.
 
The year was ushered in last fall, when a bronze statue of Jerrie was unveiled in her hometown at The Works: Center for History, Art & Technology on September 14, 2013. The Governor sent a proclamation to honor her and the Mayor declared it Jerrie Mock Day in Newark OH. The sculpture was created by Renate Fackler, with money raised through the Licking County Foundation. A great deal of honor is due US Veteran Bill Kelley, who launched the effort to remember Jerrie Mock in her hometown, and Jerrie’s sister Susan Reid, who spoke about her for years and was key in the fundraising process. 
 
We released the 50th Anniversary collectible color edition of Jerrie’s book, Three-Eight Charlie, for that event. Special thanks go to my father, Terry Hollinger, for financing the printing of that edition. A commemorative postal cancellation was created with support from the Newark Postmaster, to add to the memorabilia surrounding the day. Jerrie watched via Skype and answered questions from attendees, including fellow classmates from Newark High School.
 
Those attending the unveiling included many who continued to work throughout the year to increase awareness and commemorate Jerrie’s record. The Spirit of Columbus Chapter of Women in Aviation was named to honor Jerrie and her plane, and Chapter President Kelly Nash spoke at the event. Chapter 402 of the Experimental Aviation Association, The 99’s, Civil Air Patrol, and many other organizations (of which she was a member or honorary member) attended, donated, and provided support throughout the year. 
 
Shirley Brooks-Jones was so inspired that she committed to place a statue of Jerrie Mock at Port Columbus International Airport, and she and the Pilot Club of Columbus established the Jerrie Mock Pilot Fund at the Columbus Foundation to raise the funds to make it happen. She worked with Doug Kridler, CEO of the Columbus Foundation, and Elaine Roberts, President and CEO of the Columbus Regional Airport Authority, to acquire permissions, and Renate Fackler created an updated statue for the Airport, in which Jerrie held a globe with her stops identified.
 
Jerrie took off from Columbus on March 19, 1964 so that date in 2014 launched the 50th Anniversary events. The Columbus Foundation held their Spirit of Columbus Awards dinner, where they presented miniature versions of Jerrie’s statue. (Jerrie was the first honorary recipient, in 2013.) Each day from March 19 – April 17 we posted updates and photos from Jerrie’s trip, so readers could experience it just as readers of the Columbus Dispatch (one of the original sponsors) followed her progress in 1964. John Sivyer interviewed Jerrie about each leg of the flight, and the audio was posted so people could hear Jerrie’s story in her own voice. The Facebook and Twitter names are Fly38Charlie, and we hope to replay those posts annually.
 
On the morning of April 17, 2014 Jerrie Mock’s statue was unveiled at Port Columbus Airport, where (after renovations are completed) it will be housed in the new Legends display. Speakers and proclamations abounded, the many key contributors were acknowledged, and Doug Kridler presented the WAI Spirit of Columbus Chapter with a $2500 award that will fund a scholarship program in Jerrie’s name. A postal cancellation was created for this day, as a nod to the “covers” Jerrie carried in 1964 and postmarked in Wake Island.
 
To top off the day, at 9:36 p.m. we recreated Jerrie’s triumphant return to Columbus! Martha Lunken flew a Cessna 180 in and we received special permission from ATC for Martha to use Jerrie’s call letters. Those assembled heard “3 8 Charlie is cleared for landing” over the radio as she approached and around the world others listened via LiveATC.net, as a result of efforts by founder Dave Pascoe. (Ms. Lunken has been a pilot for 52 years, is an FAA Examiner, contributor to Flying magazine and owns a 180 – the type of plane Jerrie flew.) Jerrie’s sister Susan and daughter Valerie Armentrout (who was 3 years old when Jerrie made this trip) greeted Martha with flowers while photographers flashed photos. The Spirit of Columbus Chapter of WAI hosted a reception at Landmark Aviation, with help from GM Irene Batty, to welcome Martha and toast Jerrie. More speakers and proclamations were presented and Jerrie watched it all via Skype from her home in Florida. We released paperback and ebook editions of Three-Eight Charlie to make her story available to everyone. To close the event, Jerrie addressed the crowd herself, thanking them for attending. 
 
Jerrie’s grandson, Eddie Mock, worked throughout the year to coordinate permissions, interviews, skype sessions, book signings and anything else Jerrie’s supporters needed to help promote awareness of her accomplishments. Old friends reconnected and new called and traveled to visit Jerrie. Thousands learned about Jerrie through a longform article at BuzzFeed, by Amy Saunders. Curator of the Spirit of Columbus at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center, Dorothy Cochrane, invited me to speak there about Jerrie on Family Day. And the Women’s Air and Space Museum in Cleveland held a special Jerrie Mock Day with learning activities. A producer signed a contract with Jerrie to “shop” her story around Hollywood, in pursuit of her last and fondest goal – to bring this story to the big screen. We were proud to represent Jerrie in the Author’s Corner at EAA’s Airventure in Oshkosh, and to present her story from their main stage. She has since been inducted into the Columbus Hall of Fame and recognized in many publications.
 
Our remaining goals include having a stamp made in Jerrie’s honor, and having her inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame in Dayton, OH and the First Flight Society in Kitty Hawk, NC. We are now raising funds to create a permanent exhibit about her at The Works, so those who see her sculpture can learn more about this local aviation heroine. To support this goal, send your donation to The Works with a note that it is for Jerrie Mock’s permanent exhibit.
 
Although Jerrie was a private person, she enjoyed the events and attention this anniversary year brought. Once completed, she got her affairs in order, declined Hospice support, and died peacefully at home, with family, on her own terms, just the way she lived her life. At her request, her ashes will be spread from the air, over the Gulf of Mexico. The service will include a Cessna 180 which has been painted to exactly match her beloved Charlie, the Spirit of Columbus.
 
I am grateful that Susan Reid spoke at the Newark-Heath Chapter of EAA Christmas dinner three years ago. There we learned Jerrie’s story, and that her book was out of print and no longer available. It has been a whirlwind since then, meeting and spending time with Jerrie, publishing her book, and promoting her story. We have met many interesting people and had experiences which will never be matched. But our feelings for Jerrie Mock, the first woman to fly solo around the world, can’t truly be put into words. We can only say thank you.
 
Jerrie signed her books the way I’ll close this final post of 2014:
Blue skies always, Jerrie Mock
Links:
The Works: Center for History, Art & Technology: 
The Licking County Foundation: 
Renate Fackler: 
Women in Aviation International: 
Women in Aviation Spirit of Columbus Chapter: 
Experimental Aviation Association:
Experimental Aviation Association Chapter 402:
The Columbus Foundation:
Columbus Regional Airport Authority:
Landmark Aviation: 
BuzzFeed article: 
Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center:
International Women’s Air & Space Museum:
National Aviation Hall of Fame:
First Flight Society:

Recent Resources

Jerrie Mock was interviewed for last week’s Women of Aviation Week, by Carol Ann Garrett, another ’round-the-world flier:
new.livestream.com/womenofaviation/2014JerrieMock/videos/44246705

Dorothy Cochrane, curator of The Spirit of Columbus at the Smithsonian, wrote a super blog about Jerrie: blog.nasm.si.edu/

Read this great article by Todd McClamroch. He includes a great interactive map of her trip!
www.myflightblog.com/archives/missed-by-history-jerrie-mock-the-first-woman-to-fly-ar.php

50th Anniversary Celebration!

Jerrie Mock 1st Woman to Fly Solo Around the World

This is the 50th Anniversary of Jerrie’s record-setting around the world solo flight. She took off on March 19 from Port Columbus Airport and returned on April 17, 1964. Join us to celebrate this historic accomplishment.

Follow Jerrie on Facebook or Twitter
Come along with us as we follow her progress. Each day of Jerrie’s trip, from March 19 – April 17, we’ll post updates of where Jerrie was, 50 years ago, on her record setting flight around the world.

On Twitter:  @Fly38Charlie

On Facebook: www.facebook.com/Fly38Charlie

Help us spread the news of our aviation heroine, Jerrie Mock!

Statue Unveiling and Press Conference
On the morning of April 17, a bronze statue of Jerrie will be unveiled in the main terminal of Port Columbus International Airport. There will be a collectible Postal Cancellation created for the day, so bring your addressed envelopes and have them postmarked with an image of Jerrie’s Cessna N1538C. Bexley Middle School students have participated in an essay contest and the winners, chosen by Jerrie, will be announced during this special event.

Honorary Reenactment of Jerrie’s Historic Landing
To conclude Jerrie’s adventure, on April 17 at 9:36 p.m. (her return time 50 years ago), Martha Lunken will fly her Cessna 180 into Port Columbus to honor the end of Jerrie’s record setting flight. Ms. Lunken, female pilot extraordinaire for 52 years, is an FAA Examiner, contributor to Flying magazine and owner of the type of plane Jerrie flew. The Spirit of Columbus Chapter of Women in Aviation International will host a reception at Landmark Aviation (E 5th Ave) to welcome Martha and toast Jerrie. To participate, RSVP to wendy@phoenixgraphix.us

Stamp Campaign

Stamp Campaign

Next year marks the 50th anniversary of Jerrie’s record-setting flight. We need your help to establish a USA Postage stamp created in Jerrie’s honor. Although they have guidelines requesting three years notice of an event, we think that if many of us make the request, it may increase our chances of making it happen. Please write a quick note to:

Jerrie Mock Stamp

Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee
c/o Stamp Development
U.S. Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Room 3300
Washington, DC 20260-3501

See you at Oshkosh!

We’re excited to be heading to Oshkosh for a week at EAA Airventure. We look forward to connecting with the aviation community and sharing Jerrie Mock’s story. We’ll be in the Author’s Corner with signed books on Fri, April 2nd from 9–11 and Sat, April 3rd from 12–2, and will be speaking about Jerrie in Forum 2 on Saturday at 2:30. Three-Eight Charlie will be available in the EAA Warehouse, and in DreamBigFlyers Booth 827. Come by and say hi. If you have a memory about Jerrie and this flight, or were inspired by her, or if you have a suggestion about an event to honor her, please stop by and share it with us. Jerrie wants her story made into a movie so if you see Harrison Ford or John Travolta, point them toward Booth 827. We look forward to seeing many EAA and WAI members and telling Jerrie Mock’s story!

Help Place a Statue at Columbus Airport

September 14th will see a statue of Jerrie Mock unveiled at The Works in Newark, OH. We’re excited to honor her and raise awareness right here in her hometown. But now we’re setting our sights on a bigger audience …. we have permission to place a statue of Jerrie in the Port Columbus International Airport so that many more travelers will learn about this great aviation heroine. We hope to install it on the 50th Anniversary of her return to CMH – April 17, 2014. But first we need to raise the money to do so. To help us reach our goal, please send a tax-deductible contribution to:

The Columbus Foundation
1234 E. Broad Street
Columbus, OH  43205-1453
Attn: The Jerrie Mock Pilot Club Fund (#2695)

or to make a donation online, go to:

https://tcfapp.org/donation?f=2699

Jerrie Mock Sculpture Update

Jerrie Mock sculpture in clay, prior to foundry, with funders and sculptor.

Jerrie Mock sculpture in clay, prior to foundry, with funders and sculptor.

The Jerrie Mock sculpture has been completed in clay, and is headed to the foundry to become a bronze statue! The sculpture dedication will be at The Works in Newark, OH on Saturday, September 14, 2013 at 2:00. We hope this will be a banner event, bringing together Jerrie’s hometown community of Newark, family from across the state, and members of the aviation community from around the country.

We are so proud that the cover of the 50th Anniversary Edition of Three-Eight Charlie has been incorporated into the statue! It was a natural fit, since it includes an image of her plane circling a globe, and the words “Jerrie Mock, First woman to fly solo around the world in 1964.”

Pictured in the photo (L to R): Mary Kelley, Bill Kelley and Susan Reid (founders of the Jerrie Mock Sculpture Fund at the Licking County Foundation), sculptor Renate Fackler, and publisher Wendy Hollinger.

For information on the sculptor, visit: www.chrysalissculpturestudio.com
For information on The Works, visit: www.attheworks.org
To learn more about Jerrie Mock, read her book, Three-Eight Charlie, which you can purchase at the “Shop” button on this site.

Ladies Love Taildraggers Fly-in

Ladies Love Taildraggers Fly-in

Lisa-HeinzeThank you so much for donating the book to our Lady Taildraggers fly-in – what a wonderful surprise. I can honestly say it was a huge hit and many of us were envious of the lady that got to take it home. Lisa Heinze from Charleston, WV was the winner and seemed thrilled to have it. I’m attaching a photo of Lisa with the book after it was awarded Saturday evening. There were quite a few men at our fly-in but we made sure only lady taildragger pilots were eligible to receive the book.