King Lambert, 91, went flying with local pilot Steven Garman last week, an act equal parts friendship and respect for the Lambert family’s flying legacy. King’s grandfather, Albert Bond Lambert, took his first flight with Orville Wright. He was the first person to get a private pilot’s license in St. Louis, and developed the St. Louis airfield, which still bears the Lambert name. A close friend of Charles Lindbergh, he figured prominently in launching the Spirit of St. Louis on its first solo, nonstop transatlantic flight. King Lambert remembers Albert as a “gentleman, a pioneer, an aviator and an entrepreneur seldom equaled and never surpassed.” The grandson, in his way, comes close. Lambert, who lives in Sun Valley, smiled while climbing in Garman’s Cessna 180. He said his 22 years as a Marine attack pilot were the best years of his life—better even than his spell as an international tennis player, which led him to compete at Wimbledon. His life, he said, “has been a great trip” so far.
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