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Plane Facts: Wing Walking

Wing Walking
Wing Walking

First Documented Wing Walk: 1911
Early Use: Aircraft refueling & repair (World War I)

Founder Of First “Flying Circus:” Ormer Locklear, 1919
Trademark Stunt: Jumping plane-to-plane
Most Daring Feat: “Dance of Death”
The Stunt: Two pilots switching planes mid-air

Hollywood Film Featuring Locklear: The Great Air Robbery
Aircraft: Curtiss JN-4 “Jenny”
Film Featuring His Death: The Skywayman
Year: 1920
Cause Of Death: Crash
Reason Cited: Pilot blinded by studio lights
First Aviation Job Of Charles Lindbergh: Wing walking

First Woman To Switch Planes Mid-Air: Ethel Dare
Nickname: “Queen of the Air”
Previous Career: Flying trapeze performer
Trademark Stunt: “Iron Jaw Spin”
The Stunt: Hanging by teeth and twirling in propwash

Early Wing Walking Deaths: 8
Deaths Since 1975: <10
Recent Fatality: Jon James McMurray, 2018
Reason For WingWalk: Filming a music video
Cause Of Death: Fell too close to ground to deploy chute

Record Holder For Longest Wing Walk: Ashley Battles, 2010
Duration: 4 hours
Aircraft Speed: 100 mph
Elevation: 1,000 feet

Record Holder For Oldest Wing Walker: Tom Lackey 93 (in 2013)
Length Of Walk: 1 hour, 21 minutes
Post-Landing Comment: “It was rather refreshing.”
Previous Record Held By Lackey: Oldest person on top of aircraft during loop-the-loop
Age When Record Set: 85
His Lucky Charm During Stunts: Photo of late wife

Age Of Youngest Formation Wing Walkers: 9
Names: Rose Powell, Flame Brewer (cousins)
Aircraft: Grandfather’s Boeing Stearman
Purpose Of Stunt: Fundraising for Friend with Duchenne disease


Only Wing Walking School In World: Mason Academy, Sequim, Washington
Cost Of Full-Day Course: $985
Hours Practicing On Ground: 4-5


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