Tobías Bolaños Palma
Courtesy of J.A. Giralt,
Museo Aeronáutico Costarricense
via DGAC Costa Rica

via email from Adolfo Morales, 1-15-08
     Costa Rica's capital (San Jose) hosts 2 international airports: widebody international airport Juan Santamaria (national war hero) and also general aviation international airport Tobías Bolaños Palma (named after the first Costa Rican to become a pilot). Regarding this last, there seems to be slight to no information regarding this individual.
     In the history section of the DGAC (Direccion General Aviacion Civil - in plain language Costa Rica's FAA) There is a picture of him, (attached) with the comment "Tobías Bolaños Palma was the first Costa Rican pilot. He learned to fly in the French Army* (this could however be a language inaccuracy) in 1915." I had heard that since many years ago, and also that he apparently lost one of his legs in an accident, however as I said I have no source for that information.
     I wanted to ask you to create a section for him since he meets the standard by date. I am aware the information is very limited but I have a project to expand it: I will request both civil (birth, death certificate, identify alive relatives) in the Costa Rican government, and also I am looking to contact someone in France who could act as my liasion with the French Air Force to see if any records of him may be released. I will also request a records release from Costa Rica DGAC. There are various legacy newspapers in Costa Rica from which I am sure I can get articles however I will need to go to their installations to access those papers.
     I however ask you to open one soon as I have noticed some people contact you with books or sources where they have seen pictures or read these names written in books etc.
     It has always been very strange for me that virtually there's no other information about him other than that one picture and brief sentence, being the figure he represents in a country where a big airport is named after him.

     If you search for "Tobías Bolaños Palma" , using the Google search engine, (1-15-08), you will numerous links referring to the airport, but none offering additional information about his life and career...

Aeropuerto Intl. Tobías Bolaños
Front Entrance
Courtesy of Dirección General de Aviación Civil, Costa Rica.

Aeropuerto Intl. Tobías Bolaños
View from the ramp upon arrival
Courtesy of Dirección General de Aviación Civil, Costa Rica.

Adolfo Morales
Courtesy of Adolfo Morales, 1-16-08

I have no information as to the dates of his birth or of his death.

If you have any more information on this pioneer aviator
please contact me.
E-mail to Ralph Cooper

BackBack Home