Jean Batten New Zealand’s Most Valuable Explorer.
All About Me! • Real Name: Jane Gardener Batten • Full Name: Jean Gardener Batten • Birthday: 15 September 1909, Rotorua, New Zealand • Died: 22 November 1982, Palma, Majorca, Spain • Cause of Death: Infections following dog bite • Nationality: New Zealander • Schools: Ladies College; Parnell, A small village school in Howick.
Jean’s family members are unknown, but information shows that her father was a dentist and she also had a stay-home mother. It is unknown if Jean had siblings or not. It is reported that she had an older sister, and an older brother. Family
Introduction To Jean: Jean Batten is probably the world’s most famous female pilot in history. She has many tributes at national and international airports and museums, Her famous plane, The Percival Gull used to hang from the ceiling of the duty-free viewing platform at the Auckland International Airport, but it now hangs from the Arrival lounge. Rotorua has a sculpture of Batten at their airport and various schools have houses named after her.
Other Passions Jean was an avid Pianist and budding Ballerina in her early teen and teen years. She attended Melmerly Ladies School, in our area of Remuera. The private school was based around music, and many talented girls went there. Previously, when she lived in Howick, she attended a small village school that’s name and location is now lost. Jean loved to learn new things and really enjoyed going to school each day. Her hero was the famous prima ballerina Anna Pavlova.
Her Record-Breaking Flights 1934: England-Australia: 14 days, 22 hours, 30 minutes 1935: Australia-England: 17 days, 15 hours 1935: England-Brazil: 61 hours, 15 minutes 1936: England-New Zealand: 11 days, 45 minutes 1937: Australia-England: 5 days, 18 hours, 15 minutes
Struggles and Challenges Even though Jean may have had many very successful flights, there was failed attempt, after attempt, after attempt. Batten had even been in a plane crash whilst trying to break a previously set record by another female aviatrix. Jean was passionate about flying, but World War 2 ended her high flying adventures. Her aeroplane still had a valid licence, but she was still not permitted to fly it.
Personal Life Jean Batten had a personal life like a rollercoaster. In 1934, she broke off her engagement to a London stockbreaker by the name of Edward Walter. Walter was furious when Jean ran off with Beverly Shepherd, and Australian airline pilot, who many believe was her one and only true love. She went to visit Shepherd one year in Sydney, and on the day she arrived, he was killed in a plane crash. Jean sunk into a deep depression, which resulted in her going into seclusion with her mother and it took her mother 8 months to coax Jean to start flying again.
Jean’s exploration showed the world that, even though she was female, she could still become whatever she dreamed of being and that we can do so as well, as long as we never give up. She is obviously New Zealand’s most valuable explorer, but I personally think she could be the WORLD’S most valuable explorer! • How she influenced the world
Remembering Jean Today: Even though Batten may have passed on, she is still honoured and remembered widely throughout the world and especially her homeland of New Zealand. At Auckland International Airport, her trusty plane that helped her break records; The Percival Gull, hangs from the ceiling of the arrival lounge. A caption reads, “Why is there a huge plane hanging on the ceiling? Go upstairs to find out!” Then upstairs, they have HEAPS of Jean’s flying memorabilia, like her special cap and goggles that she wore whilst flying. Original autographs, images, more of Jean’s clothing , and of course, her plane all help add to the atmosphere of flying and being at an amazing airport. A massive quote said by Batten decorates a large wall also at the Auckland International Airport . It reads: “ Every flyer who ventures across oceans to distant lands is a potential explorer; in his or her breast burns the same fire that urged adventurers of old to set forth in their sailing-ships for foreign lands.” She wrote this quote in her autobiography, “Alone in the Sky” which was published in 1979 by the publishing company Airlife.
The Painful end of Jean Batten Batten died all alone in a hotel in Palma. Which is in the city of Majorca in Spain. Cause of death was later determined as complications following a dog bite. As Jean had refused treatment for the bite, it had become infected and infection later spread from the area bitten, to the rest of her body. She died on September 15th 1982. Her body was placed in a paupers grave, and her family back here in New Zealand only discovered she had deceased about 4 years after the tragic death of who has been called the most famous female pilot of all time
Timeline 1909: Jean is born 1924: Jean enrols at a private Girls’ school. 1929: Jean and her mother move to England 1930: Jean embarks on her first solo flight. 1933: While flying Jean encounters 2 sandstorms. 1934: Jean beats the world record for flying England-Australia in 14 days 22 hours. 1938: Jean is the first ever woman to be awarded a prestigious medal. 1945: WW2 ends Jeans flying expeditions. 1982: Jean passes away of an infected dog bite.
Bibliography http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Batten http://www.centennialofflight.gov/essay/Explorers_Record_Setters_and_Daredevils/batten/EX24.htm http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0005245.html http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/people/jean-batten http://answers.encyclopedia.com/question/did-jean-batten-go-school-234719.html http://www.motat.org.nz/collections/FACT%20SHEETS/JeanBattenFactsheet.pdf