Jerrie Mock, moments before her takeoff on March 19,1964

You have probably heard of Amelia Earhart. And you likely know that she was an aviation pioneer. You probably know she was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic, solo. And you’ve probably also been taught that she was the first woman to fly around the world.

But that last part isn’t true. Amelia may have signed up for such an adventure, but she didn’t make it. The woman who did make it around the world solo happens to be my grandmother, Jerrie Mock.

Jerrie Mock with one of her planes – photo from her collection

She was a girl from a Newark, Ohio, a small town not too far from Columbus. She wasn’t anything “special” as far as the world was concerned. Even when she made the flight, she wasn’t all that accomplished as a pilot. In fact, she only had 750 hours’ flight time under her belt, which isn’t a whole lot of time for such a feat.

She’d always dreamed of flying around the world, though, and in 1964, she decided it was time. On March 19, she took off from Port Columbus, the airport in Columbus, Ohio, and flew to Bermuda. From Bermuda, she flew onward making multiple stops, exploring small bits of the world along the way, until 29 and 1/2 days later, she arrived home in Columbus and officially became the first woman to fly around the world.

Jerrie Mock in the cockpit of Charlie, her faithful Cessna 180

To read more of her adventures, you can get her book, Three-Eight Charlie, via Kindle or a paperback copy on Amazon. You can read some of my own stories on her adventures in Papua New Guinea and around the world. This year, I’m also hoping to release podcast episodes of her adventures on the anniversary dates of each stop along her trek.