Maude ‘Lores’ Bonney: The Pilot Who Inspired Generations Of Women

Maude ‘Lores’ Bonney: The Pilot Who Inspired Generations Of Women


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Google Doodle pays tribute to Maude Rose ‘Lores’ Bonney, the first woman to fly solo from Australia to England in 1933.

Matt Cruickshank, the artist behind the doodle, reveals that he was inspired by her story: “I grew up reading boys’ adventure comics about male explorers. Bonney’s accomplishments are straight out of a girls’ adventure comic and are equally as important. She can be an inspiration for everyone.”

Born Maude Rose Rubens on 20 November 1897 in South Africa, the female icon later identified with the “Lores” nickname. She was raised in England then later moved to Australia.

Bonney first made history as the first woman who flew solo. Over the course of her 157-hour trip, she managed to lived through heavy storms, two crashes, and a herd of water buffalo that she ran into.

The pilot’s interest for aviation first sparked when she rode as an airplane passenger with her brother-in-law in 1928.

Motivated by her passion, she rode her first solo flight 2 years later — a 15-hour trip from Brisbane Queensland to Wangaratta, Victoria to have a dinner with her dad.

In addition, Bonney continued to make milestones as she becomes the first woman to fly solo not just once, but twice when travelled from Australia to South Africa.

This was during the time when she had to observe plane maintenance and pilot the plane without the radio that we have today, by the way.

After an adventure-filled life, Maude Rose ‘Lores’ Bonney bid farewell on February 1994 in Queensland at age 97.

Photo Source: State Library of Queensland

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