Wiley Post

Wiley Post

Birth
Van Zandt County, Texas, USA
Death 15 Aug 1935 (aged 36)
Barrow, North Slope Borough, Alaska, USA
Burial Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, USA
Plot Section 48
Memorial ID 831 · View Source
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Pioneer Aviator. He received international acclaim as an aviator with a colorful personality and while using auto-pilot, made the first solo flight around the world from July 15 to July 22, 1933. He began his career in the early 1920s as a barnstormer pilot, often performing as a parachute jumper. Born the son of a cotton farmer, his family moved from Texas to Oklahoma when he was five. He had a sixth grade education and attended the Sweeney Automobile and Aviation School in Kansas City, Kansas for seven months. During World War I, he wanted to become a pilot in the United States Air Service, but the war ended before he finished his training. He sought employment in the Oklahoma oilfields, but work was not regular, thus he resorted to stealing, arrested for arm robbery in 1921, and served over a year in the Oklahoma State Reformatory. On October 1, 1926, he lost an eye in an oilfield accident. He used the insurance settlement money to purchase his first aircraft, learning to fly in spite of his handicap, and was often seen with his distinctive eye patch. He gained fame as an aerial racer in the early 1930s, winning the Bendix Trophy while flying in his signature airplane "Winnie Mae". The aircraft is on display at the National Air and Space Museum at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, DC.He twice completed a single plane round-the-world flight: In 1931, he did it in 8 days, 16 hours, then in 1933 he bettered his mark by doing it solo in 7 days, 19 hours. He pioneered a number of aviation inventions, including the automatic pilot, the high-altitude pressure suit and given credit for discovering the jet stream. Friends with humorist Will Rogers, they were both killed in a crash that Wiley Post was piloting over Alaska on August 15, 1935. In 1979 the United States Postal Service honored him on a US Airmail Stamp. Besides his grave site at Memorial Park, a memorial for him and Will Rogers stands today in Nehalem, Alaska, near where their plane crashed.

Bio by: Russ Dodge


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 31 Dec 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 831
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Wiley Post (22 Nov 1898–15 Aug 1935), Find A Grave Memorial no. 831, citing Memorial Park Cemetery, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .