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Patricia Hopkins was raised in the all-black town of Robertson, Missouri. Those few square miles of land were located in St. Louis County, right next to the Lambert Field International Airport. The significance of Robertson, MO was, it was settled by blacks looking for a safe place to raise their families—away from the daily threats of racism and Jim Crow laws. In the 1970’s, the airport called for an expansion plan, devastating the tightknit community. They began buying up properties under the guise of ‘imminent domain’ for next to nothing. The same thing happened to her grandparent’s hometown of Kinloch, Missouri. She considered both places as ‘home’. Interestingly enough, those airport expansion plans never materialized… Today what remains of Robertson was ultimately rezoned as an industrial park, and the few remaining residents of Kinloch are still holding strong.

Her family lived so close to the airport that she could see the landing gear of the airplanes as the pilots prepared for landing. One of her favorite pastimes as a child was watching those planes, wondering how in the world they stayed in the air. Well, she eventually learned how airplanes flew because in 1982, she joined the United States Air Force and became one of the first female KC-135 Inflight Refueling Operators. Becoming a ‘Boom Operator’ not only helped her overcome her fears of the unknown, but also sparked a love of travel. She shares her stories as inspiration to encourage everyone to explore and pursue that ‘thing’ that brings them joy.


Contact Patricia Hopkins 


Wanderlust Books LLC
8275 E. Reno Ave.
Unit 50250
Oklahoma City OK 73140

Instagram: @patriciarhopkins

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