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Col. C. J. Tippett in the cockpit

Col. Cloyce Joseph Tippett in the cockpit

In the summer of 1929, Cloyce Joseph Tippett was 16 years old. Tip, as he was known, saw his first barnstormer land in a field in Ohio. He was captured, enraptured, with flight from that day on. Like Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart, Tip learned to fly in the plane that landed in his hometown. Unlike them, he lived his life of record-setting aviation accomplishment away from public attention. He pursued his American dream in classic American fashion, with hard work and by being willing when opportunities arrived.

Tip grew up in a working class family during the Great Depression. He studied engineering because he had to understand engines in order to fly. He joined the Army because it would give him access to planes and he could be paid to fly. The particular way that Tip followed his passion for flight resulted in his unintentional witness, and participation in, some of the most pivotal events in the last century. In an untiring pursuit of access to aircraft, and his commitment to civilian flight safety, Tip made history.

Cloyce Tippett and A Focke-Wulf FW 44J

Tip and what might be a Focke-Wulf FW 44J

He was involved in the early days of the Flying Tigers, certified the Tuskegee Airmen and was accused of spying on South American governments during WWII. His extraordinary record- setting flight over the Amazon Jungle would make headlines even today. Tip flew the first helicopters in commercial applications and in doing so, established many of the first helicopter records. He collected celebrities of the era as easily as he logged flight hours, and they added glamour to his already high-flying lifestyle. He caught record-setting Black Marlin at the legendary Cabo Blanco Fishing Club in Peru, and made friends in high society. Some of them were more than friends. Between 1929 and 1961, he logged over 10,000 hours of flight time and piloted more than 98 different types of aircraft.

This is the story of Tip’s life, and of the history of aviation, and of world history. It is His Story.


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The story would interest anyone who follows the history of flight, early aviation, the history of civil aviation, International Civil Aviation, and the history of South Americna aviation.

Cabo Blanco Peru and C. J. Tippett

Tip fished for Black Marlin at Cabo Blanco, Peru

Tip’s life followed aviation’s development through historic world events and landed him among some of the most influential people of those times. His first-in-flight accomplishments highlight his travels and adventures, told in a combination of Tip’s own words, and writing/research by his granddaughter, Corinne Tippett.

For future updates about Tip’s Biography, click here.



Copyright © 2013 by Corinne Tippett


Images from Colonel C. J. Tippett’s archive & public domain

Chavante Indian Images by Jean Mazon

Cover and book design by Corinne Tippett


All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or

transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission

of the author.


Published by The Westchester Press

Portland, Oregon


Library of Congress Control Number: 2013934741

ISBN 978-0-9843611-1-3

Liz Whitney in the 1930s

Liz Altemus Whitney in the 1930s

Available in print and kindle format


The Sequel…. Liz

A biography of Liz Whitney Tippett… coming sort of soon.

Cloyce Joseph Tippett (Tip) was deeply involved in civil aviation for the first 40 years of his life, until 1960, when he met and married Elizabeth Altemus – who became Elizabeth Whitney when she married John Hay Whitney, of the Vanderbuilt Whitneys, and then divorced him – and then married again and again– and then became Elizabeth Whitney Tippett. She was known as Liz, and she was a legend. Tip’s own story, before Liz, is a stand-alone aviation biography rich in historical signifcance. His life after meeting Liz is even more colorful, as he became influential in aviation diplomacy, American celebrity, horse racing, and a life at the side of a powerful personality… Liz.

To sign up for updates on the release of the sequel, click here.