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Tue April 22, 2008
A&M-Commerce receives high-flying donation
By Bill Oliver
Commerce, TX –
Texas A&M University-Commerce will be the home of what one observer called "the last great first in general aviation history."
Only once has anyone flown non-stop around the world without refueling. Jeana Yeager, the co-pilot of the 1986 flight of Voyager, has donated her aviation collection to A&M-Commerce for educational, science, research, and youth programs.
According to Dr. James Conrad, University Archivist, the donation includes the original molds used to build Voyager, 200,000 pages of correspondence, 14,000 slides, almost 1,000 photos, 200 hours of videotapes, maps, engineering drawings, and signs, and 16 boxes of framed plaques and awards. The awards include the Collier Trophy, aviation's version of the Oscar for Best Picture of the Year or the Grammy Song of the Year. Yeager also received the Presidential Citizens Medal from President Ronald Reagan.
In addition to Voyager, Yeager achieved multiple speed and endurance records and competed in Sulky and auto racing. Currently, she raises and trains quarter horses on her ranch southeast of Sherman. A 1970 graduate of Commerce High School who received an honorary doctorate from A&M-Commerce in 2005, Yeager's collection will be available at Gee Library as early as the spring of next year.
Click the mp3 icon to hear KETR General Manager Bill Oliver's interview with Jeana Yeager.