Wednesday, February 18, 2009


About the Story:
This is the story the way
it was for Connie, from
her heyday as Australia's
Queen of the Air to her
abandonment in an
aeroplane graveyard in
Tucson, Arizona. Where,
in becoming a home to
hundreds of pigeons, she
was saved from demolition,
restored and returned to
Australia in 1997.

As she watched the pigeons swooping
and chasing each other through the sky,
Connie remembered …
she wanted to fly.

Long time Girrawheen resident, Mabel Kaplan, well-known for her oral storytelling performances in schools and libraries around the suburbs, has published a Children’s Picture Book. Connie and the Pigeons celebrates the 60th anniversary of the first long distance passenger flight from Sydney to London on December 1, 1947 by a Lockheed Constellation L749 (affectionately known in aviation circles as Connie). Iin the early 90s, Connie is rediscovered by two Australian air buffs who restore her; and, in 1997 bring her back to Australia. Today she regularly flies in air shows around the country. The book is delightfully illustrated by friend and fellow writer, Kelli Hainke of South Lake - a primary school teacher and student of interior design. Connie and the Pigeons was officially launched on Wednesday, 12 December, 2007 at Our Lady of Mercy Primary School, Hudson Avenue Girrawheen, Western Australia where Mabel has been their volunteer Storyteller-in-Residence one day a week for the past six years. The book is suitable for 5-9 year olds and is available for sale at a cost of $16.99 from Westbooks, Victoria Park WA or by direct mail from the author.
Enquires: 9342 7150 OR email:

‘This title will be a welcome addition to our collection.’
Laurie Allen, Librarian Collection Development,
State Library of Western Australia

‘Congratulations to you and Kelli for creating such an interesting picture book - it looks great, it reads well out loud and it's a wonderful story made even better by the fact that it's based on Australian history.’

Heather Cooper, Westbooks,
Victoria Park, Western Australia

Connie and the Pigeons is a particularly engaging story with obvious historical relevance for the aircraft and its journey’
Philip Capps, Manager Inflight Product Development,
Qantas Airways Ltd


  1. Hi Belka,

    Welcome to the blogging world.


  2. Your book sounds like fun - I am partial to writing with feathers!