The achievements of pioneer Southern California aviator Moye W. Stephens will headline the Flight Path Speaker Series on Saturday, April 12, at 10 a.m. Author Barbara Schultz will share insights from her new book, Flying Carpets, Flying Wings, the story of Stephens and his early exploits and achievements.
Although Stephens is all but forgotten today, he was celebrated in the early years of aviation as a daring round-the-world flyer. Among his primary contributions to the Southern California aviation community was his close association with Jack Northrop with whom he co-founded Northrop Aviation, now known as Northrop Grumman Corp. Stephens served as the firm’s chief test pilot and as a member of its board of directors.
Stephens’s love of aviation began at an early age when his parents took him to the Dominguez Aviation Meet, the American West’s first air show, near Los Angeles, in 1910. About the time he was graduating from Hollywood High School, Stephens made his first flight at age 17 in a Curtiss OX-5-powered Standard J-1, a version of the Curtiss JN-4 Jenny. In 1930 Richard Halliburton, the famed adventurer, travel writer and speaker, signed Stephens as his pilot for an 18-month round-the-world expedition aboard a Stearman C-3B, dubbed The Flying Carpet.
“This program is a great opportunity learn more about the unique aviation heritage of Southern California,” said Nancy Niles, Flight Path president. “That is what our museum and learning center is all about.” Speaker Series programs are open to the pubic, with time allotted at the end of each presentation for questions from the audience.
Copies of the Stephens book will be available following the program for purchase and autographing by the author. Admission and parking are free.