Sicele Julia Mary Annette O'Brien

Royal Aero Club Certificate No. 8045 (20 Oct 1926)

   1926, aged 39

 
 

b. 1 Apr 1887 in London [or Limerick?], daughter of Sir Timothy O'Brien, a well-known cricketer (it says here). She was an ambulance driver during WWI, and later a tennis player.

In 1927, the second woman to get a 'B' [Commercial] Licence. Supposedly, her parents were against her taking flying lessons, and the first they heard about it was when they saw a newspaper report.

Lost a leg in a crash (onto a golf course in Mill Hill, interrupting a four-ball match) a year later, but continued with an artificial limb."It was worth it", she said, "One has to take risks for anything that is worth while".

With Lady Heath, set a British altitude record of 13,400 ft in 1928.

Sicele oBrien Hon Miss Leath Cords  Cooke Lady Heath and Sec

l to r: Sicele, the Hon Miss Leath, Mr Cords, Mr Cooke, Lady Heath and her secretary.

Killed 18 June 1931 aged 44 in her Blackburn Bluebird III G-AABF, which crashed when taking off at Hatfield.

Sicele owned:

a 1926 DH.60 Moth (G-EBOS) (the aeroplane which she crashed onto a golf course in Mill Hill), and

a 1928 Blackburn L.1B Bluebird III G-AABF (which is the aeroplane in which she and co-owner Enid Merlin Gordon Gallien were killed).

 

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