Adney J. Lirette
Collection of Roy Dillard, 3-24-05

via email from Mary Glass, 4-24-04
     Briefly, Born March 27, 1891, in Houma, Louisiana to Edgar and Marie Lirette. Named Adney J. Lirette, nicknamed "Daredevil", he started in 1913 as a "stunt" flyer and wing walker and continued until he died at his last performance on May 17, 1922 in Vernon, Texas. He made the 4000 feet jump, his parachute did not open.
      One of his favorite stunts was hanging from a rope attached to a speeding plane. His plane choice was a Curtiss Bi-Plane. His last known performance (where he did not die) was on New Year's Day, 1921 at Claiborne Field in New Orleans.
     The people in Vernon, Texas are looking for articles on his death as we speak. The New York Public \ Library has some Fox News Moving Picture Magazines, but they don't know yet if they have the article comparing Adney to Ormer Locklear (which is quoted in one of the unidentified obits). I have my grandfather, and a great aunt and uncle who still remember watching Adney wing walk and hang from the planes by his teeth. In fact, my PaPa told me Adney had a son named Leland Lirette, who lives in California. (We don't know where- if you find him, let us know).
     I have a few obituaries. One is from the Times Picayune in New Orleans, Louisiana, (dated May 19, 1922, page 9 column 1) and three others from unidentified papers. I am trying to get more clear copies right now so you can see his picture better.
Please let me know how I can help.
Thank you very much,

via email from John (Jeff) F. Waguespack, Jr., 6-11-2004
Dear Dr. Cooper:
     Just a little more on my Uncle Adney. I lived at 1313 Milan in 1922. I was four years old. My mother Aline Lirette Waguespack was two years older than her brother, Adney. I met Adney's son, Leland, in about 1935 while we were visiting our uncle Alexander Lirette, who managed a plantation (Waterproof, I think) just outside Houma, La. Leland returned to California after his visit.
      I flew B-17's during WWII, after flying Piper Cub's with a private pilots license from 1938. My uncle Edgar Lirette greatly admired his older brother, Adney and spoke of him often.
John (Jeff) F. Waguespack, Jr. Air Force Village II #446, San Antonio, TX 78245 (

via email from Marlene Greer, 5-25-10
I am a relative of the late Adney Lirette. His sister, Beatrice, was my paternal grandmother. Her son Gilbert E. Whitney, Jr. was my dad. Until a few months ago I didn't know Adney even existed. It was exciting learning about family members from that decade. Adney had many sisters and brothers that were also unknown to me. I met Lena once or twice but the rest of the clan -- "what a surprise". I would love to hear from more of my long, lost relatives if possible.

My name is Marlene Ann Whitney Greer born in 1947 to Ethel and Gil Whitney (now deceased). You can see their gravesites at the "Find-a-Grave" website. My brother Gil, III died in 1999 by his own hand. My sister Susan lives in Livingston, La.

I had a semi-famous Great Uncle and didn't even know it.


Marlene Greer
Rockwall, Texas

BackBack Home