The Pan Am Podcast

Episode 39: Madeline Smith and a Romance in the Sky

July 30, 2023 Pan Am Museum Foundation Season 2 Episode 39
The Pan Am Podcast
Episode 39: Madeline Smith and a Romance in the Sky
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Show Notes

In this episode we are joined by 98-year-old Madeline Smith and her daughter Valerie Smith O’Grady Skinner. 

Both were Pan Am flight attendants…Madeline joined  the airline right after the war in 1946 and Valerie, following in her mother’s footsteps, joined the company in 1977.

Madeline was a stewardess until 1951 when she resigned to marry the love of her life. But although personally leaving Pan Am’s employment, the airline was still an important part of her family as her new husband was a Pan Am pilot named Charles Smith. The two met on an overseas working trip and were inseparable, marrying only six months after they met. Captain Smith passed away in 1989. 

Valerie stayed with the company until the end in 1991 where she was hired by Delta and would continue flying for almost two decades. 

Today, Madeline is still a force to be reckoned with.  At 98 years young…a typical day for Madeline is playing nine holes of golf, an hour of tennis, kayaking, and then walking two miles!

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A very special thanks to Mr. Adam Aron, Chairman and CEO of AMC and president of the Pan Am Historical Foundation and Pan Am Brands for their continued and unwavering support!