SEATTLE, Aug. 7, 2009
--In December 2008, pilots CarolAnn Garratt and Carol Foy flew a small, single engine airplane around the world in a record time of eight and half days. It was the second global trip for Garratt, who flew around the world in 2003 to raise awareness and donations for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis--ALS, or Lou Gehrig's Disease--after her mother suffered and died from ALS. The 2008 flight was also for ALS awareness. Garratt will speak about her journeys and what inspired them in a presentation at The Museum of Flight on Tuesday, Aug. 25 at 7 p.m. in the William M. Allen Theater. The airplane she flew on both trips--a Mooney M-20J--will be on view outside of the Museum all day. Admission to the program is $10 for Museum non-members and $5 for Museum members.
After 18 months of planning Garratt and co-pilot Carol Foy set out from Florida's Orlando International Airport on Dec. 2, 2008 to fly around the world westbound. They arrived back in Orlando 8 days, 12 hours and 20 minutes later. Garratt's program will not only look at the inspiration and logistics of the trip, but also what it is like to share a small cockpit for 158 hours, leaving the plane only 8 times to refuel and stretch.
A resident of Ocala, Fla., Garratt is a former manager with a Fortune 500 company. She earned her private pilot license in 1978 and her instrument rating in 1980. In 1996, she completed her commercial license and bought a Mooney in 2000. She has over 3,500 hours and flies more than 400 hours a year including flying the sick and needy with Angel Flights, and instructing cadets with the Civil Air Patrol. Garratt has written two books describing her adventures, "Upon Silver Wings: Global Adventure in a Small Plane," and "Upon Silver Wings II: World-Record Adventure."
The 2008 flight was certified as the U.S. record by the National Aeronautics Association in January 2009. The Federation Aeronautique Internationale certified the flight as the world record on March 16, 2009.
Image: Pilots CarolAnn Garratt, left, and Carol Foy with their record-breaking Mooney aircraft. Photo courtesy CarolAnn Garratt.