Nancylee Malm (Florida & Bahamas)

I’d like to introduce our newest LadiesLoveTaildraggers’ member, Nancylee Malm from West Palm Beach, Florida who spends a considerable amount of time at Marsh Harbour, Bahamas too. Typically, when I post a new member’s “pilot profile” I don’t include background details; how they happened upon our website or friends who may have introduced them to us. But in this case, our newest member has such a storied past and an unexpected encounter with one of our members, you must know the entire story!

Aileen Watkins, Nancylee Malm & Nichele Thonney (Aileen’s aerobatic and tailwheel instructor from 26 years ago!!)

Email from LadiesLoveTaildraggers’ member/pilot Aileen Watkins:

Hello Judy,

This is Aileen Watkins emailing you sitting here in Man O War Bahamas with Nancy Malm, an incredible woman who began flying at the age 18 while still in high school in 1953. The name of her home is Outside Loop! She flew a Pitts in aerobatic competition, and has flown a myriad of taildraggers over the years. I met her through my very close friend and my taildragger instructor, Michele Thonney (of the former Northern Lights Aerobatic Team).
We have been talking airplanes for the last couple of hours, and her stories are fantastic.  She and her husband Lawrence will be at Oshkosh this year and she is interested in speaking with some lady pilots, and with her really cool experiences, she would be perfect! Perhaps at lunch or one of the showcases?

OK yah, that’s a pretty awesome introduction by Aileen. Nancylee did contact me through Aileen and registered for membership in LLT. I can’t wait to meet this Beech 18 and Pitts pilot at OSH! If you’d like to meet Nancylee too and hear a story or two, please come to our LadiesLoveTaildraggers Tuesday Luncheon at AirVenture. It’s possible Nancylee may even be at our Friday 10:00 a.m. LadiesLoveTaildraggers Forum presentation.

Nancylee’s Membership Information:

I love to fly, especially aerobatics. It was and still is a passion. I began flying in 1953 at the age of 18, just as I was getting out of high school in a Cessna 170. Flew mostly out of Cleveland Hopkins, Ohio or China Lake, California. Did corporate work in a Super E Beech 18. Flew a French twin-engine jet, the MS-760.

I started flying aerobatics in a 220 hp Stearman with no inverted system around 1970, and that’s when I fell in love with aerobatics. I bought my Pitts, the first manufactured Pitts S1S built in Afton, Wyoming.

After medical issues forced me to give up aerobatics, I took up soaring in the Sierras in California City, and enjoyed it greatly, but not nearly as much as I enjoyed flying my Pitts.

I terribly miss talking flying with other pilots, especially taildragger pilots, but I hope to connect with many of you here. All of my favorite airplanes are all taildraggers!

I am so excited to learn about other women who fly taildraggers who I can communicate with. Since I am losing my vision, I still dream of flying, and to share my experiences with others, while learning about yours as well. This keeps my dream alive.

Ratings: Commercial, Multi-Engine, Instrument,

Other taildraggers flown: Cub, Aeronca L-16, T-34, Ford Tri Motor, Fleet Biplane, and DC-3. multiple makes and models of nosewheel aircraft as well.

The Pitts was my absolute favorite, but the Stearman was a close second. I love all of them, they each had different roles in my life.

What is it you love about taildraggers?  You can’t match the challenge of landing a tailwheel airplane with the nosewheel experience. The others only go from A to B, and for me, taildraggers are the spirit of flying.


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