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Creighton G. "Sandy" Sanderson

C.G. Sanderson

1913-1988

C.G. "Sandy" Sanderson was born in Pickford, Michigan, November 26, 1913. His interest in aviation started when he took his first ride in 1922, at the age of 9, in an OX-5 powered Curtis JN4D. He has maintained this interest his entire life.

Sanderson enrolled in the first class of government civilian pilots' training, advanced to instructor, and then to chief pilot for Navy training at Western Michigan College. He transferred to the U.S. Army Air Force in 1943 and was a transport pilot for the Air Force to foreign countries. In India, he was assigned to the war in Burma, making air drops to Meril's Marauders. Sandy made 104 "hump" trips supplying China in their defeat of Japan.

A highly decorated aviator, he received the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with Cluster, Presidential Citation, S.W. Pacific Bar with Battle Stars, 1328 ABU Meritorious Citation, China Freedom Medal Order of Chaing Kai-shek, and Honorary Commission in the Republic of China Air Force with Command Pilot Wings.

In civilian flying Sanderson also excelled. During his 38 years as an FAA flight examiner he issued in excess of 1,000 pilot certificates and instructed and gave over 1,200 solos in his more than 44 years as an instructor pilot. He accumulated over 27,000 accident-free hours, including 16 damage-free forced landings.

Sanderson is recognized for his service as an Air Force Representative to China for having his long and illustrious career in civilian aviation, his high level of professionalism and his significant contributions to aviation safety which serve as an example to which all pilots should look as they pursue their careers in aviation.

Sanderson was enshrined into the Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame on December 17, 1987.

Smithsonian Institution Affiliations Program