Mary Ellis, who has died aged 101, was one of the pioneering women who became famous as one of the ‘Spitfire Girls’ who flew with the wartime Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA). She joined in 1941 and by the end of the war she was a first officer and had flown 1,000 aircraft which amounted to 72 different types. After the war she moved to the Isle of Wight and was managing director of Sandown Airport for 20 years, the first woman to hold such a position. She flew in a Spitfire on her 100th birthday and attended the film Spitfire just two weeks before she died on July 24.
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