FLETCHER HANKS, JR. (1917 - 2008)
(CNAC December 1943 - January 1, 1946)
(Captain - May 15, 1944)
(Hump Flights - 347)
In the 1943-45 log book of Don McBride, Fletcher listed his address as:
Fletcher Hanks, Jr.
Getting ready to transfer from PAA to CNAC
What a handsome dog!
Fletcher "Christy" Hanks
Taken at Royal Calcutta Swimming Club
(Photo courtesy of Jim Dalby)
Born in Oxford Maryland near Baltimore. Learned to fly there and joined Pan American at Brownsville in 1942, was transfered to the Alaska Division shortly afterward, and in December 1943 joined CNAC. Left CNAC in January 1946. While there, in 1944 made first search mission to find Plane 53, made it to within a mile of the site near Burma-China border, before extreme fatigue, shortage of food, and altitude sickness forced the party to abandon the effort. He kept trying and with the aid of China's government returned, and on his third attempt reached the wreckage site. The CNAC Video (see below) tells this remarkable story. The fortitude and endurance, especially with his injuries, displayed by Capt. Hanks makes a heroic story. On his third search he found the plane. He also initiated an effort, with China's help, to make a museum at Kunming with part of Plane 53 exhibited, as a tribute to the war effort involving CNAC and the Hump flights.
The Saga of CNAC #53 (1998)
Compiled, edited and produced by Fletcher Hanks.
Fletcher has also written a book about CNAC #53
SAGA OF CNAC #53 by CNAC Captain Fletcher Hanks (2004)
Copies of this excellent book are still available.
Christy Hanks knows more and has researched more about CNAC's War-Time pilots, planes and accidents than anyone else - ever!
Here is Christy's summary of CNAC's War-Time efforts.
Now, if you were in your 80's would you go hiking into the mountains, up to altitudes exceeding 10,000 feet??? Well, Christy did. Click here to read all about his trip to Burma and his safe return home.
And in Christy's own words here is his story.
August 5, 2007
Click the following link for a picture of the book
There has been an unusual book published, by the name of “Fletcher Hanks”. It has no prose as it is a comic book about my father’s comics in the 1930s. He is considered the father of the weird and fantastic comic books. He preceded Superman and other imaginative cartoons.
Starting on page 107, it tells about my relationship with my father who injured me, while in a drunken state, when I was three that left me autistic. I was not accepted at school until I was nine. This is the first time the story of my miserable childhood has been told as it would have affected my career. I think my career is now over at 90 years so I agreed to tell it to Paul Karasik, the cartoonist and author. I thank him for dedicating the book to me.
The paperback sells for $19.95 or less at www.amazon.com
Fletcher Hanks, Jr. -- known to my aviation friends as “Christy”
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