M.604  First Officer  Manley William 'Lee' Fairbrother
 flag usa  b. 23 Aug 1911, Grand Rapids, MI 10 Jun 1941 to 10 Jun 1942 

 ata manley fairbrother ATA

     

 

 father Leo James Fairbrother, a building contractor, mother Anna [Kennedy]

ed. Martin School, Grand Rapids

m. [1] 1931 Dortha Ann [Johnson], 1 child; [2]  c.1947 Anna May [Gillis]; [3] 1981 Grace L [Laterza]

prev. 1927-30 Corporal in Michigan National Guard, 1931-36 Fireman 2nd Class in US Naval Reserve.

A 'pilot parachute jumper'

prev. exp. 550hrs certified, 600hrs uncertified in (his own aircraft) J.5 Travelair NC89M, Avian Sport

Address in 1941: R.R. 3, Grand Rapids, MI


Postings: 2FPP

"A good pilot, keen and conscientious"

Off for a month after an accident in a Hurricane on 6 Dec 1941 - following partial engine failure, he overshot his selected field for a forced landing and hit a tree.

He sailed back to the US on the 11 Jun 1942 with fellow US pilots Marshall Milton, William Byrd Lee Milton, Eddie Grundstrom, Alexander Wilson, Eddie Ballard, and Harry Kindberg.


He came 4th in the 1947 Thompson Trophy at the Cleveland Air Races [the race was won by Steve Beville, another former ATA pilot]. He thereby won $500 -  he bought the  P-51 for $5,500.

Battle Creek Enquirer, Oct 1948: "FINED FOR 'BUZZING' Manley W. Fairbrother, of Minneapolis, a prominent racing pilot, paid a fine of $100 and costs in municipal court yesterday after he pleaded guilty to 'buzzing' near the home of his parents in Grand Rapids while returning from the Cleveland Air Races September 12."  [He qualified in 9th position for the 1948 Thompson Trophy, flying at 351.593 mph in his 'stripped-down P-51', but after 12 laps his engine stalled and he had to pull out.]

d. 28 Jan 1994

Buried 

His obituary says: "He came to Florida in 1971 from Star Prairie, Wis. He was an airline pilot for 24 years with Northwest Airlines in Minneapolis, a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force in World War II, and a member of the Retired Airline Pilots Association. Survivors include his wife Grace 'Jo'; two daughters, Nora Bercaw, Naples, Fla, and Patricia Hollowell, Spring Hill."

 

 Download ATA Pilot Personal Record (.zip file):download grey

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