A modern-day Amelia Earheart (that's her name) launches 'round the world flight next week

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In The Magazine, writer Liana Aghajanian has a feature on the Amelia Rose Earhart—yep, that's her name—who plans to fly across the world next week, like the famous aviator after whom she was named.

Snip:

Amelia Rose Earhart’s family always told her she was distantly related to Amelia Mary Earhart, the aviation and women’s rights pioneer who disappeared during a journey around the world. Speculation about precisely what happened persists. Expeditions are still organized to find her plane, and teams have claimed to have found its remnants.

Now, Amelia Rose is sitting in a nearly pitch-black garage, just a year before she planned to embark on her own round-the-world flight following the same route as her name-alike, something she announced at the aviation world’s premier event, EAA AirVenture Oshkosh in Wisconsin. She spends so long in the garage with her tears and her shoes that the small motion light fails to sense anyone in the enclosed space. The light goes off.

In many ways it feels as if the light is going out on her life too. Has she built her budding aviation career on a misunderstanding, a genealogical error, a falsehood she had believed to be real? How was she supposed to continue with this flight, continue with her job as “Denver’s own Amelia Earhart.”

"Amelia Reincarnated: A young pilot retraces her namesake’s journey." [The Magazine]

You can follow Amelia on Twitter, and check out her website: flywithamelia.org.

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Notable Replies

  1. If I may paraphrase Pterry for a moment, this seems a little like standing on a hilltop in a thunderstorm wearing wet copper armour and shouting 'All gods are bastards!”

  2. Hardly. Modern aviation is so incredibly advanced compared to Earhart's time it's not even funny. Flying around the world is routine these days, and depending on the plane can even be done without landing to refuel.

    More fascinating to me is that there are people in the world who will name their child after a famous historical figure and then rear that child from an early age to ride on the coat-tails of the historical figure and vicariously live through them and their fame.

    I simply can't understand the mentality that would lead people to exploit their own children to chase after phantoms of the past, instead of allowing a child to live their own life and be their own person in the present.

  3. So they should say that she's going to retrace her namesake's route but without the disappearing.

  4. I don't think you really understand what "exploitation" means. This young woman has not been exploited. She seems to be in complete control of her life (and chosen CAREER), and she's clearly a very intelligent PILOT, which is no easy feat.

    Why so disparaging of someone who is clearly very passionate about what she does? You're really focusing entirely too much on her name, and not enough on the obvious determination and drive this woman has. I was going to include "talent" as well, but that seems to belittle her accomplishments -- she's a pilot, for Pete's sake. Why are you so negative? Becoming a pilot takes a lot of hard work. I don't understand why you're trying to throw her under the bus when the ONLY personal thing you know about her is her given name.

    She is more than her name, and it's clear to me you didn't watch the video at all.

  5. So I point out that a stunt that was impressive almost a century ago is no longer as impressive because modern technology makes it almost unimagineably safer and I'm told I'm a downer?

    I read a story about a woman whose parents named her after a famous pilot, with the article discussing how she even grew up believing herself actually related to the historical figure, with the piece dripping with so much florid romanticization that it reads like an interview with Santa Anna, and you angrily fault me for drawing conclusions you personally feel are too negative and skeptical?

    I'm sorry, maybe I've just been exposed to more bullshit in my life than you have. Maybe my rose colored glasses have been discolored by it. Maybe I've seen too many things like child beauty pageants and unfortunate children named "Doctor" by their controlling and ambitious parents. Maybe I've met too many people who cling to the notions of bloodlines and descent grasping at fame and influence by invoking alleged family connection to famous historical figures.

    Despite what you may believe, being critical and skeptical of things does not instantly make someone miserable, or even merely truly cynical. The acts of questioning and doubting are not negative things. It's entirely possible that I question and doubt too strongly for your tastes - that if you were to doubt as much as I do, you would be unhappy for doing so - but I find I do not personally suffer for it in any regard.

    Believe whatever you want to believe about me personally. Pity me if you feel it appropriate. It leaves me mystified, but ultimately it is entirely benign behavior.

    As for what I believe? My pool of experiences and knowledge leads me to make a few assumptions about Ms. Earhart and her family. Yes, they're rather unpleasant assumptions - but they seem to fit based purely on the (admittedly extremely limited) knowledge I have of the situation.

    If new knowledge is presented? If I come across additional evidence about the situation which directly contradicts my current assumptions? Naturally I will question those assumptions and disregard them as appropriate.

    In the meantime, however, I'm perfectly content to come to skeptical and unpleasant conclusions if that is what my experiences and prior knowledge lead me to. The fact that you care so strongly about my arriving at such "negative" assumptions mystifies me as much as anything else, but again, it is an entirely benign behavior in a practical sense, so what do I care?

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