Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Ross Smith, Noted Flier, Dies in Fall -- April 13, 2022

Richmond Palladium and Sun-Telegram, 13-April-1922

100 years ago today, on 13-April-1922, Australian World War One ace Ross Smith and Lieutenant James Bennett died at the Brooklands Race Track in Great Britain while testing a Vickers Viking IV amphibian which they planned to fly around the world. Smith was the pilot and then-Sergeant Bennett was a crewman on the first flight from Great Britain to Australia in 1919.

Indiana Daily Times, 13-April-1922


Testing Airplane in
Which He Planned


BROOKLANDS RACE TRACK, England, April 13. -- Sir Keith Ross, brother Sir Ross Smith, who was killed with Lieutenant Bennett today in the crash of the giant plane in which they were to attempt a world flight, arrived here too late to fly with his brother, but in time to witness the disaster.

LONDON, April 13. -- Sir Ross Smith and J. M. Bennett were killed at the Brooklands flying field today while testing an airplane for a round-the-world flight. Sir Ross Smith was to have started on the globe encircling journey within three weeks. He is one of the best-known aviators in Great Britain.
Sir Ross with his brother Sir Keith Smith were the first aviators successfully to complete a trip to Australia from the British Isles, a feat for which they were knighted.

Sir Ross was flying for the first time the plane which had been built for his attempted flight around the world.

The machine whirled downward at terrific speed and crashed at Brooklands' aerodome. Both airmen were immediately killed.

Sir Ross Smith, who was decorated with the air cross and knighted by King George for his successful flight to Australia, was one of Britain’s best airmen.

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