The Zonta Club of Brisbane Inc in Australia, District 22, has been trying for years to bring aviatrix Maude Rose "Lores" Bonney to the forefront of Australian aviation history. The club's advocacy committee has been lobbying the local government, an effort that was rewarded last month.
The recently opened Kingsford Smith Drive riverside promenade and cycle path is now Lores Bonney Riverwalk, thanks to the club's efforts. According to the Brisbane City Council, "the Lores Bonney Riverwalk is a standout feature of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade and a new landmark for Brisbane. It provides a great place to walk, run and cycle, while taking in the beautiful views."
Bonney was born in South Africa and immigrated to Australia with her family as a child. A contemporary of Amelia Earhart, Bonney was a huge fan of Earhart and flew to Darwin in 1937 to try to meet her before she embarked across the Pacific. They missed each other by just one day, something Bonney forever regretted.
Bonney was the first woman to circumnavigate Australia by air, the first woman to fly solo from Australia to England and finally the first person to fly from Australia to South Africa.
Though Bonney did not seek notoriety, she was most famous in the 1930s. After World War II, she retired to the Gold Coast, Queensland, where she lived for another 50 years until she died in 1997. She often visited the Zonta Club of Brisbane Inc for Amelia Earhart Day each year.
Click here to view photos of the Lores Bonney Riverwalk.