Gökçen, Sabiha

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Gökçen was one of the adoptive (or foster, sources differ) daughters of Kamal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey. His other adoptive daughters included professor Afet İnan; he also adopted a son and fostered two other boys.

She was an orphan, the sixth child of a middle-class family, whose parents had been killed in the internal chaos after World War I, and she was adopted about 1924 or 25. She developed an interest in flying and her father's influence got her a place in a flying school and then the Turkish air cadets, in the face of considerable anti-feminist opposition.

In 1937 she spent a month as a bomber pilot, helping put down a Kurdish revolt, which made her famous. She then retired from active service to become a flight instructor until she retired in 1966.

She is recognized as the world's first woman combat pilot and the first woman pilot in Turkey. Istanbul's second international airport was named in her honor.


"The First Woman Combat Pilot." Available at: http://tesuque.cs.sandia.gov/~bbooth/docs/womenpilots/WP1stcom.html
"Atatürk Seen with His Sister, Makbule Atadan, His Adopted Daughter, Ülkü and Sabiha Gökçen." [Portrait only]. Available at: http://quake.mkutup.gov.tr/Ataturk/okey/126.html
"World's First Woman Fighter Pilot." [Includes portraits]. Available at: http://www.worldairgames.com/Sabiha/Sabiha.htm
Valkyries. "A Small Turkish Orphan Named Sabiha Gokcen." Available at:
"Sabiha Gökçen Dies." [Includes portraits]. Available at: http://www.byegm.gov.tr/YAYINLARIMIZ/newspot/2001/mar_apr/n4.htm
Erol. "Stichpunkte." Available at: http://www.bunte-heile-welt.de/stichpunkte.htm
"Atatürk Biaimle:Yakinlari." [Includes portraits and biographies of seven of Atatürk's children]. Available at: http://www.ataturk.net/bizimle/yakinlari/?sayfa=inan


Arab, Middle Eastern
20th Century
21st Century
Education, Teaching, Libraries
Engineering, Technology, Aviation, Inventions
Military and Defense
School-age Years, Adolescence
Orphaned (Both Parents)
War or Persecution
Others ("Strangers")
Wealthy, Famous, Noble or Divine Adoptive or Foster Families
Institutional Care
Parent(s) Died, Disappeared or Became Incapacitated
Birth Sibling(s) Separated
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