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Meet America’s First Female Commercial Flight Captain and Highline Place Memory Care Resident

Highline Place Memory Care (an Anthem Memory Care community) in Littleton, Colorado, has a trailblazer living inside its lively, vibrant community. Emily Howell Warner, a 78-year old resident, has an exciting history, recently celebrated at Denver’s Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum.

Ms. Warner has the distinction of being America’s first female commercial flight captain, having earned her stripes back in 1976. She once described her experience as being “under an awful lot of pressure when I started. Everyone was watching me, waiting for me to make a mistake.”

The first few days were challenging. Finally, she was considered part of the team.

When Jodi Cornman, Highline Place’s Community Relations Director, learned of Ms. Warner’s amazing accomplishments, she approached Ms. Warner and her family about sharing her experiences with local middle and high school students. They emphatically agreed.

A special Q&A event, covered by the local Columbine Courier, was held in the Wings Aerospace Academy, which is on the campus of the Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum in Denver. The students who attended the event are enrolled in the Academy’s program for aspiring flyers.

Ms. Warner, when interviewed by a Courier reporter, admitted that the early days on the job were, indeed, challenging. They were just as challenging for her male co-pilot who proceeded to sit her next to him, take the controls and tell her “not to touch” anything. Ultimately, however, the male pilots grew to respect her skills and tenacity and eventually embraced her as part of the team. “I was pretty accepted after a while,” Ms. Warner told the Courier.

Every resident has a unique history which deserves to be recognized and respected.

Of course the rest, as they say, is history. Between those turbulent early days and retirement, Ms. Warner logged over 21,000 air hours, flying for Continental Airlines, UPS and, finally working as an FAA examiner.

Our hats are off to Emily Howell Warner and we are honored to count her among our greater family of residents and caregivers at Highline Place and all of our communities. We continue to celebrate the lives and memories of all Anthem Memory Care community residents. We understand that very resident has a unique history which deserves to be recognized and respected. And we appreciate the opportunities, when possible, to share their stories.

Photo shows Emily Howell Warner standing with a life size cutout of her in earlier days as a captain. She is surrounded by a group of fellow industry colleagues.