I Fly Again!

View products that support dmairfield.org


A copy of the Davis-Monthan Airfield Register with all the pilots' signatures and helpful cross-references to pilots and airplanes is available here. Or use this FORM to order a copy signed by the author.


Tordoff, Dirk. 2002. Mercy Pilot: The Joe Crosson Story. Epicenter Press. 224 pages. ISBN-13: 9780970849373


Davis-Monthan Aviation Field Register
CulturalMotion PicturesFriendsNon Profit statusProducts and services
ReferencesPublicationsCollectionsGuest EditorsPress Coverage


Ca. August, 1935
Joe Crosson, ca. 1935

Joe Crosson arrived at Tucson Friday, May 17, 1929 at 5:10 PM. He carried four passengers: Mr. & Mrs. Hursten and Mr. & Mrs. Powell. Arriving from their home base, Los Angeles, CA, they stayed on the ground for 20 minutes, then continued their trip eastbound to Detroit, MI. They flew in Lockheed Vega NC857E. Please direct your browser to the link to discover more about their airplane.

Pilot Crosson was the brother of Marvel Crosson, popular female aviator who was killed when her airplane crashed during the 1929 Powder Puff Derby.

Joe was asked to fly the bodies of Will Rogers and Wiley Post back to the U.S. after their crash in Alaska in August, 1935. The image, left, is from a news article that appeared about a week after the crash. The entire article can be seen in the Charles Cooper Photograph and Document Collection available for view elsewhere on this Web site.

There is no NASM record for pilot Crosson. However, he has a fairly good Web presence, with this link presenting some early news articles (Warsaw Daily Times) about his Alaska experiences.

A brief historical sketch with further sources is at the link. Crosson was born June 18, 1903 and died June 21, 1949, almost 20 years after his sister.

A couple of images from the Alaska Digital Archives are here. A 2002 biography focused on his mercy flights is cited in the left sidebar. It discusses the influences of his sister Marvel and his wife Lillian.

Another image of him in Alaska during the early 1930s is here. If you have additional information about pilot Crosson, please contact me at the link in the right sidebar.

Below, courtesy of Tim Kalina, a photograph from January 26, 1930. Rayon, as in his necktie, was a new fabric. Cotton, as in his shirt, was not, and it possibly shows the stress of a cramped cockpit.

Joe Crosson, January 26, 1930 (Source: Kalina)
Joe Crosson, January 26, 1930

Below, the caption from the back of the photo. A brief biography of Carl "Ben" Eielson that puts the caption in context is here.

Joe Crosson, January 26, 1930, Caption (Source: Kalina)
Joe Crosson, January 26, 1930, Caption


UPLOADED: 03/08/08 REVISED: 07/02/09, 07/06/12

The Register
I'm looking for photographs of pilot Crosson and of his airplane to include on this page. If you have one or more you'd like to share, please use this FORM to contact me.
Contact Us | Credits | Copyright © 2008 Delta Mike Airfield, Inc.
This website is best enjoyed in a 1024 x 768 screen resolution.
Web design by The Web Professional, Inc