AIR PAGEANT THRILLS 30,000:
WHITTALL FIELD DEDICATED WITH STIRRING RACE
. . . While flying conditions were not ideal, the weather man provided an almost perfect day for the spectators. The constant drifting of clouds from the southeast caused the fliers some uneasiness during the first part of the pageant but as the clouds remained high there was no interference with the events. The wind reached a velocity of 25 miles per hour and close to the ground the fliers reported that the air was rather "bumpy" . . .
The pageant was unmarred by a single accident to the planes or their pilots which had serious results. There was one narrow escape, however, when Richard E. Cobb, while piloting a Travel Air plane, in the high-powered commercial handicap race was struck on the forehead by the cap of his gasoline tank. Cobb was stunned by the blow and lost his senses for a few moments. When he recovered he found himself in a "spin" close to the ground. By fast thinking he was able to drive his plane out of the "spin" and finished second in the race. . . .
While the flying during the whole afternoon provided the full range of air thrills, it remained for Ralph "Kitty" Barrows of the New England Aircraft Corp. to provide the thrill which aviators of long experience admire, the "dead stick landing." He also looped the loop, showed the "falling leaf," did barrel-rolls and other stunts, but these were amateurish compared with his famous "dead stick landing." The dead stick landing means that a pilot shuts off his motor in the air and glides to the ground.
Barrows climbed to about 1500 feet before he shut off his motor. The speed of his climb gave his plane sufficient momentum for a wide glide by cautious use of the prevailing winds. He dived, nosed the plane over on its wings in a perfect bank, dived again, glided, rolled, dived for the third time, leveled his plane while less than 25 feet from the ground and landed as lightly as a bird. The crowd roared its approval and the cool and happy airman hobbled off the runway. He hobbled because just two weeks ago he was released from a hospital after an operation for appendicitis. . . .
Worcester Telegram and Gazette, October 13, 1927.