Amelia Earhart’s epic 1932 trans-Atlantic flight : Derry Colr. urges plan to mark 90th anniversary
Sinn Féin Councillor Sandra Duffy is to table a motion calling on Derry & Strabane Council to mark 90th anniversary of Amelia Earhart’s landing in Derry following her epic flight across the Atlantic.
Colr. Duffy’s motion, to be tabled before the monthly meeting of Derry City and Strabane District Council, will urge that a programme of events is developed by the Council and that the pioneering US aviator’s accomplishment is ‘remembered and celebrated for its great stride in female aviation’.
The motion also commends those local organisations who have continually highlighted and celebrated Ms Earhart’s achievement and the historic link with Derry.
Speaking to the Journal Councillor Duffy said: “With next year being 2022 it’s vitally important we do something of significance to mark the 90th Anniversary of Amelia Earhart’s landing in Derry with a substantial programme of events.
“The story of Amelia Earhart’s epic journey is known throughout the world and I feel we need to recognise the huge visitor potential the Amelia Earhart legacy holds for our city and district.
“Promoting stronger links with the USA and building on them, be they tourist, educational or business can only be beneficial.
“As a city we need to be constantly updating, refreshing and grasping every opportunity with merit that presents itself to increase our tourist product.
“I think it’s also important to play tribute to many of the groups over the years who have worked to mark Amelia’s epic journey and her historic landing in Ballyarnett, particularly the likes of Studio 2, The North West Amateur Radio Club and the Amelia Earhart Derry Group, who have been imaginative and creative in ensuring that the legacy of Amelia Earhart’s landing in Derry is remembered and celebrated for its great stride in female aviation.”
Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean in a flight lasting 14 hours, 56 minutes.
Her bright red Lockheed Vega plane touched down in a farmer’s field at Ballyarnett, on the outskirts of Derry, on Saturday, May 21, 1932.
Asked by a local farmhand had she flown far, Earhart replied: “From America”.
As the first woman to fly solo nonstop across the Atlantic, Amelia Earhart received the Distinguished Flying Cross from the US Congress.
She also received the Cross of Knight of the Legion of Honor from the French Government and the Gold Medal of the National Geographic Society from US President Herbert Hoover.