In 1893, the Dalton Gang attempted to rob two banks at the same time in Coffeyville, Kan. All the members were gunned down by armed citizens and died in their boots, all except the youngest of the Daltons, 27-year-old Emmett.
Surviving nearly two-dozen bullet holes in him, Emmett would spend the next 14 years in the Leavenworth federal penitentiary until he was pardoned and released. The sole surviving Dalton had every intention of beginning a new law-abiding life. Until, that is, he ran across my grandfather and heard his idea about airplanes.
If he was anything, my grandfather was a grand storyteller. As a young boy who came to his house each Sunday afternoon, fresh from Sunday school, I ran from my parents 1959 Buick up his driveway and onto the porch just listen to the tales from his life in Oklahoma Territory.
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