Lynn Rippelmeyer

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Lynn Rippelmeyer is the first woman to fly a Boeing 747[1] (SWA F/O July 2, 1980), and the first to captain the "Jumbo Jet" across the Atlantic Ocean. On July 18, 1984 she was captain of People Express Airlines flight #2 from Newark International Airport to London Gatwick airport, departing at 7:35pm. She was also part of the first all-female crew for a scheduled US carrier (with Captain Emily Jones, Air Illinois, DHC-6 Twin Otter, 30 December 1977).

Rippelmeyer began her career in aviation as a TWA flight attendant in 1972. After taking lessons to become qualified, she became TWA's second female pilot as a Boeing 727 Flight Engineer in 1978. She has been honored with her uniform being placed in the Smithsonian Institution, being named as Woman of the Year in England (1984), and being featured in a BBC documentary, Reaching for the Skies (Episode 2 The Adventure of Flight).

Rippelmeyer was part of the first all female Boeing 737 crew in 1982 at People Express. She then went on to fly for Continental Airlines when People Express was merged, and later for United Airlines when it merged with Continental. At United, she trained on the B-787 Dreamliner before retiring in 2013.

Bringing hope of a better life to the people of Roatan and Honduras, she founded ROSE (ROatan Support Effort) after flying daily commercial flights into Honduras. Passengers often included missionaries and medical teams who volunteered their time and service to the country's poor. She made friends with the people of Roatan who were doing their part to help by creating and supporting health care clinics, schools, sports programs and an animal shelter. After witnessing the island's needs she began bringing supplies in on her flights, during her days off and while on vacation. Thus, the non-profit organization ROSE ( was founded in September 2017. ROSE helps to collect, transport and deliver donated supplies to qualifying local non-governmental organizations, groups and programs that bring medical, dental & vision health care, education and meals to those who most need them. ROSE also supports the Roatan Animal Rescue, including a local young man aspiring to become the island's first home-grown veterinarian.


  1. ^ Gant, Kelli (June 2001). "Women in Aviation" (PDF). Flight Attendant News: 11–12. 

External links

  • Ms. Rippelmeyer captaining a Continental Boeing 747 on YouTube
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