In this biography for middle-grade readers, Nancy Roe Pimm tells the story of Geraldine “Jerrie” Mock, the first woman to fly solo around the world. In her trusty Cessna, The Spirit of Columbus — also known as Charlie — she traveled from Columbus, Ohio, on an eastward route that totaled nearly twenty-three thousand miles and took almost a month. Overcoming wind, ice, mechanical problems, and maybe even sabotage, Mock persevered.
Mock caught the aviation bug at seven years old, when she rode in a Ford Trimotor plane with her parents. In high school, she displayed a talent for math and science, and she was the only woman in her aeronautical engineering classes at Ohio State University. Although she then settled into domestic life, she never lost her interest in flying. What began as a joking suggestion from her husband to fly around the world prompted her to pursue her childhood dream. But the dream became a race, as another woman, Joan Merriam Smith, also sought to be the first to circle the globe.
Even though Mock beat Smith and accomplished what her heroine Amelia Earhart had died trying to do, her feat was overshadowed by the Vietnam War and other world events. Now, Pimm introduces Mock to a new generation of adventurers.
About the Author
Nancy Roe Pimm is an award-winning author of nonfiction books for young readers, five of which have been Junior Library Guild selections. Smoky, the Dog That Saved My Life is her second book (after The Jerrie Mock Story) for Ohio University Press’s Biographies for Young Readers series. A native of Brooklyn, New York, with three daughters and two grandsons, Nancy lives in Plain City, Ohio, with her retired race-car driver husband, their two dogs, two cats, and python named Monty.
Table of Contents
Author's Note ix
Circumnavigating the Globe
Flight 1 March 19, 1964 3
Flight 2 Early Years and Chasing Dreams 14
Flight 3 Bermuda Bound 27
Flight 4 Santa Maria 35
Flight 5 Casablanca 42
Flight 6 Nigeria and Libya 49
Flight 7 Egypt and Saudi Arabia 57
Flight 8 Pakistan and India 65
Flight 9 Thailand and the Philippines 73
Flight 10 Guam, Wake Island, and Hawaii 82
Flight 11 Home! 93
Flight 12 Supersonic lets and Record-Breaking Streaks 103
Blue Skies Always
Jerrie's Timeline 117
Jerrie's Achievements & Awards 119