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These pages from vintage modeling magazines like Flying Aces, Air Trails, American Modeler, American Aircraft Modeler, Young Men, Flying Models, Model Airplane News, R/C Modeler, captured the era. All copyrights acknowledged.

As I have written many times, the lack of proportional representation of women and girls in the model airplane realm is not because when they do show up, no attention is paid to them. In fact it is just the opposite. Go to any flying field of any type - R/C, C/L, or F/F, and watch what happens when a girl shows up with a model if you doubt it. In 1960 and in 2022, and all the years in between, the fairer sex is sought out and highlighted by model aviation magazines. They are never exploited, ignored, or criticized - just the opposite. You can be sure that any female model builder/flyer and/or contest official receives due attention and credit. The 1959 Academy of Model Aeronautics Nationals (Nats) is a prime example of that which I claim to be so. Many other examples can be found in the articles posted here on the website.

That Feminine Touch - Caution! Ladies at work.

Thurly Schoenky holds .049 Clipper Cargo entry.

The California Nationals had its fine weather flying, its model talk, Disneyland, Knotts Berry Farm, the ocean, old friends, and the best natured females in the world - those that either fly or help at the model airplane championships.

We need more feminine flyers and helpers. How much easier it must be to take in a Nationals when the wife or girl friend is interested. Take note men.

Here is an actual case to prove my point.

Three months before the Nationals, Jack Block introduced Carol Weiner to her first model contest. He started her out as a helper. Carol learned about the different classes you could fly in. She did a lot of looking and asking. She became interested.

Three short months later her own towline glider was built, tested, and ready for the Nationals. Carol was one of the few women contestants. While she didn't win a place, Carol has enough enthusiasm to try many more contests. And she got the fun of joining in.

Other new faces at the Nationals include Pat Barrera of Manhatten Beach, California. She flew four events in the Junior age class. Pat is only thirteen and has a fine start toward becoming a top modeler. She flew four events in the Junior age class. Pat is only thirteen and has a fine start toward becoming a top modeler.

Betty Bell of Fort Worth, Texas, may be new at the Nats but she has been winning and flying for six years. Betty likes variety. Her events include rat race, combat and free flight gas. Betty placed sixth in open ROW this year. The men had better keep their ships tested because Betty was the Senior Champ at the Southeastern Championships in only her second year of flying!

Shirley Adams and her U-Control fleet.

Mrs. Bob Hawkins lights dethermalizer fuse on son Brian's PAA-Load model.

Carol Lyn Weiner with her first All glider - she's a school teacher when she's not out flying in contests!

Another first-timer at the Nats is Shirley Adams, a Junior from San Diego, California. Shirley flies U-control and I do mean fly. At this Nationals she competed in seven events and won such things as a third in A speed, fourth in B speed. Very nice for a gal with but three years of building and flying behind her.

One of the new gals this year was Judy Norris from Denver, Colorado. She helped her husband Ken on helicopter day. It takes a smart crew to operate his semi-scale Jet Jeep. It has two Pee Wee engines for power, and while he starts them, she holds down the fort.

Parnell Schoenky has no trouble getting sister Thurly as a helper. She likes California scenery and Thurly makes pretty good scenery herself. Par's sister is a great help to him at any contest, and especially at the Nats. She's an experienced shutter snapper and has many hundred feet of movie film credits. The Shoenky team is from Kirkwood, Missouri.

Mrs. Bob Hawkins is another contest goer and helper. She must be a very understanding wife. Most modeling homes have only one balsa chipper at work. The Hawkins fliers number three. What a monstrous pile of shavings!

Jane Deitchman has a bit of a different role to play at the Nats. In addition to helping husband Norman, she does her bit officiating. Jane and Norm have run an event at the Nats for the past few years. Norm is interested in free flight scale and the Nordic events. They came from Oak Park, Illinios, to work and fly.

Judy Norris is "crew man" for hubby Ken on helicopter day.

Jane Deitchman holds Norm's A/2 towline glider (they've settled down in California since the Nats).

Betty Bell  with her Torpedo 19 powered "Senator" free flight plane.

The 59 Nats are way in the past now, but the Dallas Nationals are coming up. Here's your chance, gals, for a most interesting vacation. Surprise that boy friend, or husband, by really getting into action. Dallas, here we come. - Dorothy Conover.



Posted October 1, 2022

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Even during the busiest times of my life I have endeavored to maintain some form of model building activity. This site has been created to help me chronicle my journey through a lifelong involvement in model aviation, which all began in Mayo, MD ...

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