Crazy? Brave? Fearless? Stupid? It must take a streak of madness to change from one plane to another in mid-air without safety equipment. Wing walker Gladys Ingle does just that the video below.
The full title of the video is “Air Crash Averted by woman’s pluck and iron nerve. Woman Pilot changes planes and fixes new landing wheel on disabled plane in mid-air.” And that is exactly what happens!
Gladys Ingle Video
Gladys was a member of the 13 Black Cats, an aerial daredevil team responsible for Hollywood stunt work in the 1920s. Back then health and safety was far into the future, so death defying stunts could take place on a whim.
Running for 2 minutes and 46 seconds, the British Pathé film looks fantastic. The clarity of the picture makes it even scarier really… just one slip and it would all be over.
Now would you be able to do something like that? I’m sure I could do the bit at the end, standing on the wing while the plane lands. The rest though? Pretty much a whole bag of no.
Female wing walkers did many fun things in the 1920s, such as dancing on the wings, playing tennis while in the air and more. You can see some more pictures and information at The Women Who Walked On Wings.
Due to the proliferation of cameras, I am guessing the whole wheel change thing is a stunt. Regardless of that fact, it takes some serious balls for someone to not only change planes in the air, but to effect a repair.
Happily Gladys Ingle lived to the ripe old age of 82, unlike some of her colleagues. Falling off the wings and being killed happened on many occasions, which is not at all surprising really.
What did you think of the film? Could you do a Gladys Ingle and repair a plane in flight? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.