After reading The Hallelujah Flight by Phil Bildner, I was interested in reading more about the pilot James Banning. It was shocking and saddening to find that his death was tragically tied to discrimination and racism. He was the passenger in a fatal plane crash as he was not permitted to be the pilot. Otherwise, most of the information I found was similar to the content included in The Hallelujah Flight.
There is not a wealth of information about Banning, so it made me appreciate even more the way Bildner made Banning come vividly to life.
I have taken the basic information about Banning’s life and created a short biography for students to read and compare to the story book. I created three versions of the text (advanced, easy, and easy without reference to Banning’s death) for you to pick the text most appropriate for your students. The text can be downloaded here via Teachers Pay Teachers.