Two events will mark the Aug. 15, 1935, anniversary of an Alaskan plane crash that claimed the lives of Oklahomans Will Rogers and Wiley Post.

Aviation enthusiasts will converge on the Will Rogers Dog Iron Ranch at Oologah Sunday, Aug. 13, landing on a 2,000-foot grass strip adjacent to the house where Rogers was born. A program starts at 9 a.m., emceed by Jim Hartz, retired television newsman and chairman of the Will Rogers Memorial Commission. The program will include unveiling of “Past Meets Present”, a painting by Gail Frakes Booth of Tulsa, daughter of Dale Frakes, longtime Fly-In chairman. Mary West of Oologah will present a medley of patriotic songs and String N Things, Tulsa bluegrass band, will play. Boy Scout Troop 88, coordinated by Leonard Space, will present the colors. Uniformed members of the Civil Air Patrol will assist in parking planes.

Frakes said 60-100 plans are expected. Members of the Rogers family will attend.

On Tuesday, Aug. 15, a wreath will be placed on Will Rogers Tomb at the Claremore museum, which opened in 1938. Steve Kirby, Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper assigned to the aircraft division, will fly over during the ceremony. Cherokee Nation Talking Leave Job Corps will present the colors.

Doug Watson, who will portray “Will Rogers in the Classroom,” will be at the Sunday Fly-In and will appear on Tulsa channel 6 Friday morning at 8:25 sharing some of Will Rogers flying stories. Frakes and pilot Jack Kearbey, who has been a regular at the Fly-In are scheduled to be on Tulsa channel 8 in the 9 a.m. hour to tell about the event.

Rogers, a Cherokee, was the leading aviation booster of his time and although he did not pilot a plane, was inducted into the World Aviation Hall of Fame.

Source: Will Rogers Memorial Museum

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