Angel or Speed Demon?

Angel or Speed Demon?

Marion Jayne was a little of both as she touched the lives of thousands of people. This race has been named in her honor to pay tribute to a woman who was an awesome pilot, amazing entrepreneur, astonishing athlete, incredible parent and always, a formidable competitor. She was an excellent golfer, bowler and bridge player. She leaves a broad legacy of accomplishments. She founded five businesses, co-founded two enterprises, served as Chair on two Boards and won over 100 air race trophies. In 2000 Marion was inducted in the Aviation Pioneer Hall of Fame. She was named a 100 Aviation Hero for the first century of flight at the 2003 Kitty Hawk Celebration.

By the time Marion started flying, she had already: participated in the Olympic diving trials at age 13; married at 17; co-founded stables with her husband, George; had four children; and had been a world class equestrian as one of the first riders to jump a horse over a 7-foot fence. At 43, she was only the 12th woman to achieve an ATP rating. Marion won an astounding 26 first place victories flying her famous Twin Comanche and other planes, which stand as a record in cross country speed racing. She created the first cross country speed race open to both men and women. She founded the Grand Prix Air Race, co-founded the Air Race Classic, launched what is now the National Air Races by U.S. Air Race, Inc. and started "Tailwinds", an aviation-oriented mail order gift catalog.

Her 1994 Gold Medal triumph with her daughter, Pat Keefer, came in the longest race ever held; 24 days around the world. Marion was a shining example of excellence in over 40 countries on six continents. She has been featured on ABC, CNN, CBS and TV stations around the world. At this time she is the only U. S. pilot to have raced her plane twice around the world.

Marion Jayne personifies the spirit, the tenacity in the face of adversity, the accomplishments and the independent leadership that it takes to have her legacy live well beyond her personal life span. Pilots, neighbors, friends and family have all been influenced by her. Her style was one of encouragement. She was both an angel and a speed demon. So, listen to her legacy and when you have a perfect landing, think of Marion, she'll be smiling. When you wonder whether you should do something difficult, think of Marion...she knows you can. Your achievements will be her legacy.

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