M.116 *  First Officer Edward "Booger Red" Vencill 

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 b. 15 Jan 1912, Dallas, TX  26 Sep 1940 to 30 Nov 1940

 ata edward vencill 'Booger Red' in his Stearman      

 

One of 10 children (he had 5 brothers and 4 sisters]

His uncle died and left him $75,000 in February 1940. "I haven't seen him in years. I don't even know what his first name is. I only know him as Uncle Joe."

Anyway, he said he was "going to use both hands and try to spend it in two months."

Address in 1941: 3518 Punam St., Dallas TX


Arrived in the UK on the 'Duchess of Atholl' 5 Oct 1940, with fellow pilots Roger Inman, Howard Mussey, William Cummings, Martin Wetzel and Constant Wilson.

Returned to USA via Bermuda and Venezuela 30 Jan 1941. He said he had met German fighters in the air only on two occasions and "both times the German planes were only about 300 yards away.. They made no attempt to attack, but they certainly scared me", he confessed.

m. 2 Aug 1941 Virginia Lee [Galloway] in Jefferson, Arkansas [3 sons, 3 daughters]

d. 19 October 1961 at Macron Lake, Mississippi, in an aircraft accident while crop-dusting.

Booger Red book cover

The subject of a 1962 book called "Booger Red: The Saga of Edward Vencill, Master of Grim Humor, Daredevil Flyer, ...One of a Vanishing Breed" by Gene Foster


The Story of "Booger Red"

Edward Vencill is dead, but Booger Red lives on, a legend in the annals of American aviation and a fond memory for those who knew him best.

Those of you who never inhabited the dusting strips of our country never heard of Booger Red. But those who have followed the trade of the professional pilot know him as a legend in his own lifetime.

Edward Vencill and Booger Red are the same courageous, careful person. But at an early age, freckle-faced, devil-may-care "Booger Red" took over; and most folks who knew him forgot he had the name Edward Vencill.

During his wildest exploits - barnstorming, crop dusting, and just out-of-this world plane jockeying - reporters who covered his stunts and crashes seldom spelled his name correctly, but regardless of how his name was spelled, readers knew "Booger Red" was at it again."

His biographer, Eugene Foster, recalled meeting him in 1955. He noticed a "crippled fellow in khaki pants and shirt working over a 450-horsepower Stearman. The man's right leg looked about four inches shorter than his left, and his right arm was bent and twisted. 

The next thing I knew, the crippled guy was in the cockpit, the engine was roaring and then the plane was airborne. Then, the strangest thing happened. The plane was hardly off the ground when the crippled guy who didn't look like he could walk, much less fly, had it in a slow roll."

 Read more at https://www.amazon.com/Booger-Red-Vencill

 

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