Amelia Earhart (3)


Photos: public domain.

I want to be free!” —Amelia Earhart.

§ STORY SUBJECT: You want to do things no one has done. You don’t know if you will succeed, but you don’t care. You know you must try, even as you know you must breathe to live.

“Pioneers” are people who go where other people are afraid to go. They do things other people have not done. Something inside them pushes them to do what they do. They can’t help it. For them, it is like breathing. It is simply their life. Amelia Earhart was such a person.  

     When Amelia was young, she saved newspaper stories of women who learned to do things that only men did. One of those things was flying airplanes. Finally, in 1921, when she was 24 years old, she took her first flying lesson. One year later, she earned her license to fly.  Seven years later, she was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. She was not the pilot, she was just a passenger. But people were so amazed by her courage, that they talked more about her, than the poor pilot! After that, her name was known all over the world.


Amelia arrives in England.

      In 1932, she flew across the Atlantic all alone. It took almost 22 hours. During all those hours she could not sleep and had to be very alert. She was only 34 years old.  After that, she worked very hard to make flying for ordinary people possible.  It didn’t happen quickly, but soon planes were made to carry people across countries and oceans. People began to see the world. The first passengers were as brave as Amelia.  Air travel was not safe then . . . and it was not comfortable! The first “stewardesses” were actually nurses. They were not on board to give people food and magazines—but medicine if they got sick!

     Amelia’s biggest dream was to fly around the world. It was not only very dangerous, but almost impossible at that time because of the amount of fuel a plane could carry then. Amelia almost made it. She was so close. She had done everything so well. But somewhere over the Pacific Ocean her plane went down and she was never found. Less than one hour after her last radio message, ships were sent to look for her. Ships searched the ocean for days and weeks. But to this day, no one knows where her plane crashed. The world loved the courage of Amelia Earhart. She gave other people courage, both men and women. When they saw her, they wanted to do better. And maybe that is why pioneers are so important. They open up new possibilities for us all. They give us all more courage.

     Once, when someone asked Amelia why she kept trying to do harder and harder things she answered, “There is more to life than being a passenger.”

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