Born 24th July 1892 in Atchison, Kansas, Amelia Earhart was an American aviator who set many aviation records. While on a flight to circumnavigate the globe she disappeared and was declared lost at sea. How she disappeared still remains a mystery.
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Amelia Earhart served as a nurse’s aid in Toronto during World War I, where she would spend her spare time watching the pilots train at a local airfield. Once back in the US, Earhart took her first flight in December 1920 with World War I pilot Frank Hawks – a month later she became one of the few women to go to flight school under female flight instructor Neta Snook. In December 1921 she passed her first flying test.
During her time as a pilot, Earhart broke many aviation records, including becoming the first woman to fly solo over 14,000 feet and the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.
When she arrived back in the US after flying from Newfoundland, Canada to Northern Ireland she became the first woman to be awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. She also became the first woman to fly a solo non-stop flight across the US and a solo non-stop flight from Hawaii to mainland US.
In 1973, flying a twin-engine Lockheed 10E Electra along with navigator Fred Noonan, Earhart set off on her second attempt to become the first pilot to circumnavigate the entire globe. With 7,000 miles to go before landing back in Oakland (where they started the trip) the pair set off from Lae, New Guinea to their next stop in Howland Island. En route to Howland Island, Earhart lost radio contact with the US Coast Guard and disappeared. Despite efforts to find the pair, on July 19th, 1937 Earhart and Noonan were officially declared lost at sea.
During her time as a pilot Earhart helped to set up The Ninety-Nines, an organisation for the advancement of female pilots, creating more opportunities for women in aviation.