North Carolina Centennial of Flight

Viola Gentry

Viola Gentry of Rockingham County learned to fly an airplane in 1924, making her the first woman from North Carolina to fly. In 1928 she set the first nonrefueling endurance record for women, flying for eight hours, six minutes, and thirty-seven seconds. After surviving a crash while trying for another endurance record, Gentry actively promoted aviation among young women and men.