Dottie Patrick’s passion for flying passed to next generation through EAA scholarship

Feb 20, 2024 | Featured, Around Ottawa County | 0 comments

This vintage photo shows Dottie Patrick with the airplane she built at her home. She did some of the work in her garage and some in her living room.

BY SHERI TRUSTY

Dottie Patrick became a licensed pilot at the age of 18 during World War II.

During her lifetime, the late Dottie Patrick flew through aviation barriers without thought of the impact she was making on the world. She was just 18 when she earned her pilot’s license in the midst of World War II, and, while many women struggled to gain entry into the cockpit, she found little resistance as she pursued her dream to fly.

Patrick, who died in 2022, served in the Ohio Wing of the Civil Air Patrol during the war, where her duties took her across the eastern part of the state looking for downed pilots who crashed during training exercises. Through her job, she saved the lives of many soldiers stateside.

Following the war, Patrick worked for Griffing Flying Service, which is still in business in Port Clinton, and she eventually accepted a job with Piper Aircraft, delivering their planes to customers around the country.

When marriage and family temporarily grounded her, she fed her aviation appetite by building a biplane at her Marblehead home.

“It was a design from Lithuania. I took the plans and started building a plane,” she said during a 2019 interview. “I built it in the garage, and it was even in the living room.”

Patrick was awarded the Civil Air Patrol Congressional Gold Medal in 2015 in recognition of her service during World War II. Awards and accolades are appreciated, but for Patrick, her greatest reward was the adventures she experienced in the air.

“Flying was a disease that hit me,” she said in 2019. “I’d had a wonderful life — all those years, all the places I’ve been.”

Now, Patrick’s passion for aviation is being honored by Tin Goose Chapter 1247 of the Experimental Aircraft Association in Port Clinton which established a new college scholarship for women interested in pursuing a degree in an aviation or aerospace-related field.

This scholarship, the Dottie Patrick Scholarship, is open to young women who are current seniors or undergraduates. Students must have a GPA of 2.5 or above and be a graduate of either an Erie County or Ottawa County, Ohio, high school. Scholarship winners will be awarded up to $2,500.

“Dottie’s love of aviation knew no bounds, and she would enjoy nothing more than encouraging the next generation of women to pursue their aviation dreams,” said Lisa Benjamin, President of EAA Chapter 1247.In addition, Tin Goose Chapter 1247 also offers the James Parker Memorial Scholarship which is open to both men and women.

Scholarship applications are available at local high schools or by visiting www.TinGoose1247.org/scholarships. All applications must be submitted no later than March 31, 2024. Winning scholarships will be awarded sometime in May.

To learn more about EAA Chapter 1247, visit www.TinGoose1247.org.

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