Eddie Rickenbacker Quotes

Home / Aviator / Eddie Rickenbacker Quotes
Edward Vernon Rickenbacker
Capt. E.V. “Eddie” Rickenbacker wearing the Medal of Honor. (U.S. Army Air Force photo)

Nickname(s) Eddie
Fast Eddie
Born (1890-10-08)October 8, 1890
Columbus, Ohio
Died July 23, 1973(1973-07-23) (aged 82)
Zürich, Switzerland
Place of burial Green Lawn Cemetery
Columbus, Ohio
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch Air Service, United States Army
Years of service 1917–1919
Rank Colonel
Commands held 94th Aero Squadron
Battles/wars World War I
Awards Medal of Honor
Distinguished Service Cross (7)
Legion of Honor (France)
Croix de Guerre (France)
Other work Championship racing driver
Rickenbacker car company
Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Eastern Air Lines

Courage is doing what you are afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you are scared.
Eddie Rickenbacker
Some friends are better shots than are casual enemies.
Flying is one of the safest jobs in the Army as long as you don't drop out. If you do drop out, you are a dead man, and dropping out means, usually, that you have made a mistake or let go of your grip.
Eddie Rickenbacker
I shall never ask any pilot to go on a mission that I won't go on.
When I was racing, I had learned that you can't set stock in public adoration or your press clippings. By the time I was 26, I'd heard crowds of 100,000 scream my name, but a week later they couldn't remember who I was. You're a hero today and a bum tomorrow – hero to zero, I sometimes say.
Eddie Rickenbacker
Aviation is proof that given, the will, we have the capacity to achieve the impossible.
Eddie Rickenbacker
I am not a labor hater.
The experienced fighting pilot does not take unnecessary risks. His business is to shoot down enemy planes, not to get shot down.
Eddie Rickenbacker
I can give you a six-word formula for success: Think things through – then follow through.
Eddie Rickenbacker
The excitement of automobile racing did not compare with what I knew must come with aeroplane fighting in France.
Eddie Rickenbacker
Fighting in the air is not a sport. It is scientific murder.
Never count on the crowd to take care of you.
Long practise in driving a racing car at a hundred miles an hour or so gives first-class training in control and judging distances at high speed and helps tremendously in getting motor sense, which is rather the feel of your engine than the sound of it, a thing you get through your bones and nerves rather than simply your ears.
Eddie Rickenbacker
Sports of every sort had always appealed to me.
The sensation of dying is sweet, sensuous, placid.
The obviously inexperienced pilot is the game the scientific air-fighter goes after, and the majority of victories are won that way. But, on the other hand, it is the novice usually who gets the famous ace by doing at some moment the unexpected thing.
Eddie Rickenbacker
I've cheated the Grim Reaper more times than anyone I know.
When I look up and see the sun shining on the patch of white clouds up in the blue, I begin to think how it would feel to be up somewhere above it winging swiftly thought the clear air, watching the earth below, and the men on it, no bigger than ants.
Eddie Rickenbacker
I would rather have a million friends than a million dollars.
I'll fight like a wildcat until they nail the lid of my pine box down on me.
Eddie Rickenbacker
There is a peculiar gratification in receiving congratulations from one's squadron for a victory in the air. It is worth more to a pilot than the applause of the whole outside world.
Eddie Rickenbacker
The four cornerstones of character on which the structure of this nation was built are: Initiative, Imagination, Individuality and Independence.
Eddie Rickenbacker
It is the easiest thing in the world to die. The hardest is to live.