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PILOT STORIES: Ames, Charles Hayden

Air Mail Service Began: December 8, 1920
Air Mail Service Ended: October 1, 1925
Total Hours Flown: 1334
Total Miles Flown: 132,739
Assignment: College Park, Maryland
  February 15, 1921 – Hazelhurst Field, New York
  June 1, 1921 – Cleveland, Ohio
  September 1, 1922 – Hazelhurst Field, New York
  December 1, 1922 – Cleveland, Ohio

Charles Ames was born on February 2, 1894 in Jackson, Michigan. In 1917, he enlisted at Rockwell Field in San Diego, California and in the next year was in ground school at Berkley. He worked his way up to an instructor position at San Antonio, Texas, then at the Curtiss field in Kokomo, Indiana in 1920. He had over 700 flight hours before signing on with the Air Mail Service on December 8, 1920.

On October 1, 1925, Ames disappeared from sight in the mountains near Bellefonte, Pennsylvania while flying a deHavilland airplane on his portion of the Cleveland to New York run. Dozens of groups worked to find Ames over the next several days, including national guard troops. The 32-year old pilot was finally found in the wreckage of his airplane, where he had died on impact.

Learn more about Charles Ames' accident.

Wreckage of Ames' airplane  
  Charles Ames
Click on the photos to view a larger image.

(top left) Wreckage of Ames' airplane

(bottom right) Ames
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