Explorers Heroes

Amelia Earhart

by Tori from San Diego

Amelia Earhart ( ())
Amelia Earhart ( ())

Kellin Quinn once said, "Sometimes you gotta fall before you fly" (Sleeping with Sirens). For one to fly, one must take a risk. This is what Amelia Earhart did. She took risks and ended up flying - literally and figuratively. Earhart was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. But that isn't all she did. Amelia was born July 24th, 1897, near Atchison, Kansas. She lived with her sister and grandparents, and was slightly wealthy. When Amelia was seven, she built a little wooden "rollercoaster". She fell from the coaster, flying for a brief second, crash landing on the ground - and injuring her upper lip in the process. "Her lip stung, but the stunt had been fun" (Van Pelt). She wasn't deterred by this injury; it only fueled her adventurous spirit more. Amelia used this spirit all throughout her life, flying everywhere in America, and gaining fame, fortune, and fans. She used this fame and fortune to both forward women's rights and help other people. Amelia Earhart, an American Aviator and women's rights activist, deserves the title of hero because she embodies impactfulness, courage, and compassion.

Amelia was a women's rights activist and self proclaimed feminist who helped other women gain rights. She was also very interested in other famous women. "Throughout these years, she kept a scrapbook of newspaper articles on women's accomplishments in business, and let her friends know that. She was a confirmed feminist who would choose her own life" (Cochrane).

Amelia believed that women should have equal rights and was very proud of other women who made names for themselves. She was an adamant supporter of these women, because she believed that women could do as much as men. Earhart also used her own fame and achievements to help women. "Newly emancipated women were inspired by her achievements" (Brick). Her work inspired other women to follow in her footsteps and make a name for themselves - she showed them that women did deserve a place in the business world. If Amelia hadn't shown women that they had something worth giving to society, women probably would not have equal rights today.

Amelia and her plane ( ())
Amelia and her plane ( ())

Although it was extraordinarily dangerous, Amelia loved to fly. Perhaps the reason she loved to fly was because it was extraordinarily dangerous. The courage it took to fly was built on her love of thrills and her adventurous spirit. "She captured something of that spirit in  one of her poems, which begins, 'Courage is the price that life exacts for granting peace./ The soul that knows it not, knows no release/From little things;/Knows not the livid loneliness of fear,/Nor mountain heights, where bitter joy can hear/The sound of wings" (Mergen). Because she has courage, she understands what it is like to be courageous - and, perhaps, what it is like to know fear. The phrase, "bitter joy" explains that fear and courage, like sweet and bitter, are not antonyms. You can have both at the same time. However, surprisingly enough, her love of flying did not spring up immediately."It wasn't until Earhart attended a stunt flying exhibition. that she became seriously interested in aviation. A pilot spotted Earhart and her friend, who were watching from an isolated clearing, and dove at them. "I am sure he said to himself, 'Watch me make them scamper,'" she said. Earhart, who felt a mixture of fear and pleasure, stood her ground" ("The Official Website of Amelia Earhart"). Amelia was afraid, yet did not back down when the pilot attempted to scare her. Her courage was proven by this ordeal, because courage is being afraid and going ahead anyway. This courage influenced her entire life, leading her to become one of the most famous aviators in history.

Amelia ( ())
Amelia ( ())

Earhart was by no means a cold-hearted woman. On the contrary, she was remarkably kind and caring. She was always ready to help someone, and cared deeply about others and their suffering. When Amelia was nineteen, "She returned to Toronto, determined to become a nurse... The sight of four men had a profound effect on her. The men, each of whom had lost a leg in battle, hobbled along on their crutches supporting one another" (Van Pelt). Amelia felt for these men, so, "She left... to become a nurse's aide in Spadina Military Hospital. There the graphic display of the human cost of war weighed heavily on her mind and set her on a lifetime path of pacifism" (Cochrane). Amelia had become a nurse to help the injured, for she cared about other people. What Earhart saw horrified her - men with arms and legs blown off or missing, people with bullet holes through the chest... People dying everywhere. The waste of human life disgusted her, and she vowed to live a life of peace. Amelia witnessed firsthand the costly price of war - suffering, death, and destruction.

Amelia Earhart, a courageous, compassionate, impactful woman, truly deserves the title of hero. As Dorothy Cochrane boldly states, "Her true inner legacies were her contributions to aeronautics and women. Her slim, frail body belied a deep inner strength to accomplish as much as she could. She tirelessly promoted aviation as a safe and viable means of transportation, allowing herself to be used as advertising bait for the career she loved. Her gender served as an acknowledgement that aviation was safe for everyone and that even a woman could be a pilot, but her life served as an inspiration for generations of young girls and women. Earhart's influence on the establishment and growth of the aviation industry during its formative years and beyond was profound, though not without controversy, as she was often accused of shameless publicity stunts and questionable flight proficiency. Nonetheless, she remains a universally recognized symbol of aviation, personal achievement, and women's rights." Earhart impacted society by her many accomplishments in aviation. She also used her courage and compassion to become an inspiration and a hero. As Mergen said, "Earhart was one of the most appealing heroes in an age of American hero worship. Like Lindbergh and Byrd, Earhart pioneered air travel by establishing flying records and opening new routes. Like Babe Didrikson Zaharias the athlete and Louise Arner Boyd the Arctic explorer, Earhart showed that women had a place in fields that were generally restricted to men." Amelia  is truly a hero because she did something no other women had even attempted to do - prove society wrong. They said, 'women can't fly.' They were wrong. Amelia flew. But she did so much more than that - she opened up a window of opportunities for women everywhere. And all because she had the courage to fall, and fly into the sky - and into our hearts, where she will remain until the end of time.



Brick, Catherine A. "EARHART, Amelia Mary." Notable American Women, A Biographical


1607-1950 (Vol. 1-3)

(1971): 538. Biography Reference Center.

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Cochrane, Dorothy S. "Amelia Mary Earhart." American National Biography (2010): 1.

Biography Reference Center.

Web. 3 May 2013.

Mergen, Bernard, and 

Mergen, Bernard. "Amelia Earhart." Great

Lives From History: The                                           

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1. Biography Reference Center. Web. 3 May 2013.

"The Official Website

of Amelia Earhart." The Official Website

of Amelia Earhart. N.p.,



09 May 2013. 

Van Pelt, Lori. Amelia Earhart: The Sky's No Limit. Paw Prints, 2010. Print.

Page created on 5/25/2013 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 5/25/2013 12:00:00 AM

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