Dean C. Smith (US’1917)

Groundbreaking aviator

Instructor, explorer, pilot, and pioneer. From the time he left Principia College, Dean C. Smith devoted his life to aviation.

At age 17, Smith was the youngest flight instructor in U.S. military history; he logged 3,765 hours flying for the U.S. Airmail, pioneering night flights and electronic instruments; and was chosen from 25,000 applicants to fly for Richard Byrd’s exploratory expedition to Antarctica.

Smith was the president of the National Air Pilots Association and earned the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Harmon Trophy, which honors America’s most outstanding aviator.

  • From Print

Discover More Stories