Stine, Betty Pauline, 2nd Lt

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Last Rank
Second Lieutenant
Last Primary AFSC/MOS
AAF MOS 770-Airplane Pilot
Last AFSC Group
Pilot (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1943-1944, United States Army Air Forces (USAAF)
Service Years
1943 - 1944
USAAFOfficer Collar Insignia
Second Lieutenant

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by SSgt Robert Bruce McClelland, Jr. to remember Stine, Betty Pauline, 2nd Lt.

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Contact Info
Home Town
Fort Worth, Texas
Last Address
Blythe Army Air Field, California

Date of Passing
Feb 25, 1944
Location of Interment
Santa Barbara Cemetery - Santa Barbara, California
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Ocean View Lawn Section, Lot 416, Quad W 1/2, Grav

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In the Line of Duty
  2015, In the Line of Duty

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
Betty Pauline Stine
Sep 13, 1921-Feb 25, 1944 

The investigating report stated that sparks from the engine exhaust had set fire to the tail of the plane. Just before the plane crashed into a mountain, Betty was spotted by a miner coming down in her parachute. It wasn't until later that the miner and two others reached Betty. She had been dragged across the rocky terrain by the strong winds and was is very bad shape. She was taken to the base hospital at Blyth where she died.

Very shortly after Betty's death, a parachute training system was built at Avenger field and twelve hours of instruction were added to basic training.

Betty was born in Fort Worth but grew up in Santa Barbara, California. She attend the public schools and state college for two years and then transferred to the University of Arizona. However, she returned to Fort Worth Municipal Airport of flight training before joining the WASP.

She was an only child and was the great niece of humourist Will Rogers. She was named after his wife.

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Last Updated:
Feb 25, 2015

Sketch of B P Stine
It was a Friday afternoon and there were overcast skies at 5,000 feet near Quartzite, Arizona. Betty was on the return leg of a solo cross-country training flight to Tucson and had just left Blythe in an AT-6. She was part of a group of 13 WASPs from class 44-2. Betty had accumulated almost 160 hours of flying and over 47 were in the AT-6.

At about 16:15, a miner, Mr. L. A. Aplington, observed a parachute descending and an aircraft crash into the ground. He called to two other men to help and they went to the parachute. It took approximately 45 minutes to get to Betty. She was layng motionless on the ground. Her shoes were missing and were never found. They wrapped her in some blankets, put her in the truck, and took her to Quartzite. An ambulance was dispatched from Blythe Army Air Base. She was taken to the base hospital where she died soon afterward.

Examination of the crash site found the wreckage in two main areas. Part of the tail section, including the right horizontal stabilizer, was found in a burned condition at the top of a mountain. The rest of the plane was found at the foot of the mountain with no signs of burning. The report concludes that Betty abandoned the plane after sparks from the engine exhaust set fire to the fabric covered horizontal stabilizer and she lost control of the plane.

Very shortly after Betty's death, a parachute training system was built at Avenger field and twelve hours of instruction were added to basic training. Later in July, a modification to the AT-6 exhaust system was introduced.

From a field of 760 candidates, Will Rogers was in 46th place in a list led by Wilbur and Orville W right. His name ranks with astronauts, Southwest Airlines Herb Kelleher, Eddie Rickenbacher, Gen. James Doolittle (he was in Claremore in 1979 for Will Rogers 100th anniversary celebration), Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart, Will??s great-niece Betty Pauline Stine was a pioneer woman aviator. The granddaughter of Mary (May) Rogers and Frank Stine and daughter of Jacob Edward (Jake) Stine and Mary Allen, her father lived with Aunt Maude and Cap Lane in Chelsea after his mother died in 1909.
Betty, an only child was born 1922 in Texas named for Betty Rogers and Pauline McSpadden Love, was a member of Women??s Air Service Pilot (WASP) program and the first WASP to be granted a uniform.
She died in 1944 after parachuting from her burning plane.

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