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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Top Honors to a High Flying Sister

Pat Massimini is my birth sister. She is a successful and phenomenal woman who balances her many personal and creative interests along with her academic and professional journeys. She holds many titles, a few of which are Wife, Mother, Grandmother, Doctor, Professor, Artist, Seamstress, and Pianist. Can we say “high achiever?” Those who know and love Pat will tell you she values the first three titles the most….in addition to being a beloved Sister, Daughter, Aunt, and Friend.

Pat also has a special love of flying: her husband Vince is a lifelong aviator and they spend many hours in the air. Among her many talents, Pat is a quilting expert. Pat has created beautiful quilts through the years and gifted them to people in need of comfort, whether for the loss of a loved one or a war hero down in spirit or health. Pat made personalized wall-hanging quilts for Doretha and me commemorating our first marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon and we affirm that her work is awesome! Pat also co-owns a growing quilt business and shares her talents with others. Occasionally, Pat enters quilt contests and her talent is solidly affirmed by master quilters. The following is Pat's winning first place entry in the AirVenture Oshkosh 2008 quilt competition this week in Oshkosh, Wisconsin followed by a description of her quilt block.

The 1908 Flyer

The Wright Brothers first flew in December 1903, but only for 852 ft. They perfected their design in 1904/5 and produced the 1905 Flyer—the first “airplane of practical value.” After securing their patents, the Wrights began demonstration flights in 1908. Orville demonstrated the 1908 Flyer at Arlington, but crashed—killing Lt. Thomas Selfridge, the first fatality of powered flight. He eventually successfully demonstrated a Flyer in 1909 for the U.S. Army. That aircraft—the first military airplane—is in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC.

Wilbur went to France to demonstrate the 1908 Flyer at Le Mans, near Paris, and later at Pau and in Italy. He was an instant success among the Europeans, who were still trying to fly a closed course, while Wilbur was doing figure 8s!! Joined later by Orville and their younger sister Katherine, they became the most famous people of the new twentieth century. Below is a picture of Wilbur with the King of Spain. A former Prime Minister of Britain was so excited that he helped lift the launching weight for the catapult.

This quilt block commemorates the 100 years since Wilbur’s famous flights in France. It depicts the 1908 Flyer with scenes from France.

Congratulations to a high flying sister!

Love, Pam


doretha said...

You are so right, Pat is amazing. I have the quilt she made me hanging in my living room for all to see. I do not know where she finds the time and energy to do it all, but she does. I think she figured out the secret that Cookie mentioned in her blog about making choices. We have the power to make choices every day of our lives. They are not always easy ones, but they belong to us. I join you in your salute to your sister, she soars incredibly high and does it with grace, dignity, and elegance.

Tina said...

What a beautiful way to honor your sister and share such wonderful information with all of us. All of you women continue to amaze me!!! Thank you for sharing your value and strengths.

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