Unfolding history of Veterans Air Express garners storytelling invites.

Dear Veterans Air Families, ever-diligent Research Network, and Followers of this adventure…

The first half of 2020 promises energetic exposure for our still-unfolding history.

  • ON JANUARY 22 An invitation from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott campus, to be the presenter for their monthly Aviation History Speaker Series. The honor, association and compliment to the Veterans Air story cannot be exaggerated! To top off the event, the University will video the evening and provide VAE a copy! If you’ve plans to be in or near Prescott AZ on January 22, consider yourself invited! And please let me know. Deep appreciation, ERAU, for this opportunity.
    • Here are a few of the previous Series Speakers:
      • Donnie Cochran, first African-American Blue Angles pilot
      • ATC Controllers Thomas Morin & Peter Zalewski, first moments of 9/11 from inside Boston Center
      • Filmmaker CJ Machado, produced film about 75th Anniversary of D-Day
      • Francis Gary Powers Jr., son of U-2 pilot shot down in Cold War
  • COMING SOON (and unrelated to 22 Jan) A 3-part video interview by Students of The Non-Sked Era Research Project at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach campus. Conducted in July by three ERAU women students who breathed fresh air into my hope for the future of the world, they and another impressive student video editor peppered the footage with 50+ images pulled from our VAE archive. From reviewing the “draft,” all I can say is “They did nothing short of a spectacular job!” A huge thank you, Team, for the work and the laughter.
  • FOR JULY… An article accepted by AIRWAYS Magazine will appear in both their hard-copy print and online versions. This exciting announcement is due to AIRWAYS Aviation History Editor David Stringer and David’s support of more Veterans Air research. [Read our exchanges in this 28 August 2019 Post by clicking here.] Given the broad spectrum of AIRWAYS content and David’s reputation and knowledge about the non-sked era, this will be grand exposure for Veterans Air. Thank you, David, for your encouragement.
  • WORK IN PROGRESS… By invitation, a story is planned in General Aviation News. A phone interview with Editor Janice Wood will be embellished by a few images “from back in the day” and some photos “from now, especially of the RV.” (Gracie must have called the Editor; I promise, I didn’t prompt that last request!!!) Covering a wide and informative range of general aviation topics, the publication delivers in both print and online versions with over 110,000 monthly readers. Interview and publication dates TBD. Thank you, Janice, for the invite.

The enrichment you each have provided…

None of this would be possible without the enrichment you have each provided to this research project. Yes, my files are full of news articles and bits and bobs of intriguing information…BUT

WITHOUT the face-to-face time, the hugs and ice cream cones with Jack, Thomas, Edward, and John (Stettner, Cowart, Martz and Schaus) and email exchanges with Michael Frome with transcriptions by his daughter Michele…

Never expecting to meet crew members of her dad's 1945 Veterans Air Express, this collage captures her four visits and the 5th man Gaye Lyn contacted.
Treasures of the search…face-to-face meetings and email exchanges with five crew members of Veterans Air Express.

WITHOUT the hospitality of and laughter with Marilyn, Marie and June (Gries, Martz and Frome) our treasured Veterans Air widows…

1945 Veterans Air Express Widows Marilyn Gries, Marie Martz and June Frome enjoy recent visit by Gaye Lyn, airline founder's daughter.
Poignant, joyful experiences of researching 1945 Veterans Air Express are
face-to-face visits with Marilyn, Marie and June, widows of VAE crew members Robert Gries, Edward Martz and Michael Frome.

WITHOUT the friendships and stories and efforts of the Veterans Air “kids” like me and the 11 other located Veterans Air families whose fathers had already passed away…

A headshot collage of 1945 Veterans Air Express crew members and families located during current research into the air line's history.
Some photos old, some photos recent. All tell a story about Veterans Air Express
exceptional founders, crews and families.

WITHOUT YOU, this research would not be informed with the life, love, energy and grace that energizes it and attracts the kind of above invitations we’ve received to tell our story.

And…the “Oscar” also goes to you, my ever-diligent Research Network

Veterans Air Families, you are my inspiration, motivation and joy to know. You deserve more credit than I can give you. But…you must share the spotlight with my ever-diligent Research Network. Here, I introduce just a few of them in graphics soon to be released in the Embry-Riddle 3-part video. Like an iceberg, these men and women represent merely the tip of my Network.

Photo collage shows five aviation historians and professionals with Gaye Lyn. They figure among the 50+ Veterans Air Express Research Network she credits as ever-diligent and sources of treasure.
These five smiling gentlemen are among the 50+ men and women in the U.S. and internationally who I call upon as my Research Network. The humbling truth about them is…they never forget me. They come back months, even years later with a treasure or a tip about Veterans Air that they’ve recently unearthed! And they cheer on this research endeavor.
A list of 12 curious and tenacious Librarians from Prague to Teterboro, NJ, from the United Nations Archive to the Library of Congress. from Universities at Embry-Riddle and Northwestern, and Public and State Libraries in Santa Fe
And then there are the Librarians. Another truth…they are the bedrock of this research. They, too, never give up.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Sebring Historical Society (FL) should be listed here for the valuable press clippings and telegrams in their archive that document Veterans Air briefly established maintenance base at Hendrick Field.

To Everyone…my deepest gratitude and “bestest” wishes for 2020 and beyond. Keep an eye out for Gracie & me…’ya never know!

Gaye Lyn

2 Comments
  1. My “deepest gratitude and bestest wishes for 2020 and beyond” go to you, Gaye! Veterans Air Express was always a part of my life through my father’s stories – the degree to which you have enriched this legacy is just incredible. You are a special person. My special thanks for your enthusiasm, diligence, determination, and friendship. Much love! -Al

    • THIS is why I do what I do! Your message touches me to my core, Al. I just read your comment this morning and it comes at an especially appreciated time. Last night, I finished the “first final draft” of my upcoming Embry-Riddle talk. And, very honestly, it amazes and pleases me beyond my wildest imagination at how much more I could tell. Doing justice to the Veterans Air story is getting harder and harder…even with the gracious hour that ERAU’s Speaker Series allows me. So I always revise the talk to include new info. The innumerable, unexpected outcomes of the research have been and remains worth the journey. Thanks, dear friend, for all your help and encouragement along the way. Hugs, Gaye Lyn

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