Aloft In Leelanau

                                                       


The big lake has no mercy, ... especially for those tempting fate.

Seventeen year old Deborah DeCostello was a raven-haired lady daredevil who jumped out of airplanes for a living.

This she did on October 1, 1920, having been hired by Empire Village to entertain at the autumn fair.

The weather for parachute jumping was not good.

George Johnson, head of the fair, tried to pay Deborah $400 not to jump - but to no avail.

Deborah was determined to dare the devil.

A wicked wind carried her out over Lake Michigan, far from shore.

Too far to be rescued from her landing in the icy waters of Sleeping Bear Bay.

The young lady's body was recovered a month later.

No relatives could be found.

It is said that a diamond ring on her finger paid for a headstone and plot in the St. Philip Church cemetery.

To Whom It May Concern: 

Your daughter, Deborah, who came to Leelanau 

Fearless and alone, ...

Now rests forever in the Land of Delight.

She will not be forgotten.

See You In Leelanau Up North,
Chris


                    Visit A Leelanau Landmark:  St. Philip Cemetery - Pay your
                    respects to Deborah at her churchyard gravesite, located 
                    very near to where she embarked on her fateful flight - one
                    hundred years ago this month.  South LaCore St. at M-22, 
                    Empire Village.


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