John Quincy Adams was a prolific visitor at Tucson. He landed nine times during the two years between December 8, 1927 and October 12, 1929. Based at Riverside, CA March Field each time, he arrived in military trainers made by Consolidated, de Havilland and Douglas. He carried passengers only three times, which is curious, because he was a flight instructor at March Field, and cross-country flights through Tucson were commonly flown during cadet training. To be fair, though, he identified two of his flights as "Ferry."
Below, from the Army Register for 1929, is his military record to-date. We learn he was born in Montana, July 1, 1903.
Adams' Military Record as of 1929 (Source: Woodling)
Adams did not enjoy a long life, with the associated development of a flying career we can read about, or with the honors and records such as seen with other Register pilots. In fact, about two months after his last visit at Tucson, he was killed in the crash of his airplane, along with fellow Register pilot R.H. Gilley. Adams was 24 years old.
Plane Crashes and Burns Near Mine in Arizona Saturday.
Miami, Ariz., Dec. 7. —(AP) Two United States army aviators, [Register pilot] Lieut. R. H. Gilley, 25, of Houston, Texas, and Lieut. J. Q. Adams, 24 of Inglewood Cal., stationed at March field, were killed shortly after noon Saturday when their open cockpit biplane crashed and burned near the Inspiration mine, four miles north of here. The wrecked ship was burned, witnesses said, when an unidentified Mexican who ran to the scene immediately after the crash, lighted a cigarette and threw the burning match to the gasoline-saturated ground. The airplane was enveloped in flames and it was believed Gillley burned to death. Adams was thought to have died in the wreck.
The pilots who came here several days ago to participate in dedication of an airport took off on the return trip to March field and circled the mlne as a farewell gesture to the mine officials, who had been their hosts. The motor apparently stalled and the pilots attempted to land in a canyon. The plane hit a high tension power line and toppled to the ground.
Officials at March field said both men were experienced flyers, and had been stationed there for about 18 months. The lieutenants were accompanied here by Lieut. W. B. Plaususs of March field, who was flying nearby in another ship at the time of the crash. Plaususs landed safely. The bodies were taken to a mortuary pending instructions from governmental authorities.
Lieutenant Adams, with [Register pilot] Lieut. William G. Plummer, killed in a crash at March field six months ago, conducted a daring airplane search over the Grand canyon last spring for Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Hyde, Idaho couple attempting to shoot the rapids of the Colorado river in a scow. The flyers found the boat used by the Hydes, and established the fact that the honeymooners had been drowned.
At left, from the Billings (MT) Gazette, Saturday, December 7, 1929, we discover the circumstances of the crash.
Military Honors Accorded Flying Instructor of March Field
(Associated Press Leased Wire) Inglewood, Dec. 13.—
Lieut. John Quincy Adams, United States Army flying instructor at March Field, Riverside, who died in the wreckage of his plane at Miami, Ariz., last Saturday, was buried here late yesterday with simple military honors.
Fellow officers of the March Field flying corps bore the flag-draped casket to a sunny knoll In Inglewood Park cemetery, while Lieutenant Adams' squadron, his place in the formation left blank, droned overhead.
Lieutenant Adams and Lieut. Richard H. Gilley of Houston, Tex., were killed when their army plane, in
which they were maneuvering in dedication of the municipal airport at Miami, Ariz., fell and were burned as
they dipped in salute over the town. Lieutenant Gilley's body was sent to Houston.
At right, from the Bakersfield (CA) Californian, Thursday December 12, 1929, we learn about his funeral and the fate of Lt. Gilley's body.
For any Web search you perform for pilot Adams, you'll have to design it so you don't have to sort through the many hits related to the sixth U.S. President.
If you have information about pilot Adams, please let me KNOW.
THIS PAGE UPLOADED: 05/14/12 REVISED: