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Amelia Earhart haunts Lynnie Ques

Historic aviator makes her presence known

by Katie Arvia

LANSING, Ill. (October 2018) – When Lynn Cartwright, better known as Lynnie Que, moved her BBQ restaurant to its new location at the Lansing Municipal Airport in March 2017, she was not a believer in the paranormal. However, it took only a short time to convince her that her restaurant was haunted. In fact, Lynnie believes the spirit is none other than that of Amelia Earhart.

Lynnie Ques moved to the Lansing Municipal Airport, adjacent to the historic Ford Hangar. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

Lansing Municipal Airport was originally named the Chicago-Hammond Airport; the Village acquired the property in 1976 for $1.75 million. With a rich history dating back to the 1920s, the Lansing Municipal Airport has seen its fair share of famous faces. Henry Ford erected his now-historic Ford Hangar on the property in 1927, and it was named a national historic site in 1985. Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan visited the airport in September 1990 to film two commercials. Famous aviators such as Charles Lindbergh, Wiley Post, and yes, Amelia Earhart, all used the airport at some point in time.

Lansing acquired the airport property—including the Ford Hangar—in 1976. (Photo: Darlene M. Kadar, 1979)

With such an expansive history, it’s not too hard to believe that at least one ghost haunts the halls of the airport. Lynnie and her employees can attest to that. “Music will be on when we come in in the morning,” they say. Or, “[We] hear the elevator beep and nobody gets off.” Even more dramatic, Lynnie has experienced things getting thrown at her—a plate and an ice scooper. She knows it was Amelia. “She’s not being mean or angry,” Lynnie explains. “She’s just letting us know she’s there.”

When the former airport maintenance manager told Lynnie how frequently he was frightened by Amelia, Lynnie says she felt relief. “I said, ‘I am so glad you said that because I thought it was just me cracking up,’ and it wasn’t! And believe me, he is very straight; he doesn’t make up nothing.”

As far as Lynnie knows, hers is the only establishment on the airport’s 500+ acre grounds that is haunted.

Despite the spooky events that occur in her airport bar and grill, Lynnie is enjoying her new location. She moved to the airport from the plaza at 19267 Burnham Avenue, where her business was carry-out only. Now her establishment is a dine-in restaurant with full bar and scheduled entertainment. “We’re loving it up here,” Lynnie said. “Our customers say, ‘We feel like we’re at home.’” The shelves are lined with pig-themed gifts from guests and coloring pages by young artists who don’t mind sharing the space with Amelia’s ghost.

Whether or not it is really Amelia who is turning on the radio and throwing plates, one thing is sure: her presence, whether paranormal or not, is felt strongly at the restaurant.

A life-size poster of Amelia decorates the door to the women’s restroom. A photo of Lansing resident Jan Marcon posing with Amelia herself sits on the shelves near the elevator next to Sassy the pig (the first pig Lynnie bought for her restaurant). And, on a chance encounter, an Amelia lookalike (and pilot herself) visited Lynnie Ques last year when her plane touched down in Lansing.

An Amelia Earhart lookalike visited Lynnie Ques one day, and Lynnie asked for a photo. (Photo: Lynn Cartwright)
Jan Marcon (left) visited Lynnie Ques, and she presented Lynnie (right) with an enlarged photograph of Amelia Earhart at Midway Airport greeting three little girls. The girl in the center was Jan Marcon. (Photo provided)
Jan autographed the photo of herself and Amelia, and now Lynnie keeps it in the cabinet near the elevator. (Photo provided)

Regardless of whether or not you believe in the paranormal, there is no denying that Lynnie Ques and the Lansing Municipal Airport are unique locations in the village, and both offer a chance to explore some of Lansing’s history. For more information on the airport, visit lansingmunicipalairport.org. To learn more about Lynnie Ques, visit lynniequesbbq.com.

Lynnie Ques Airport Bar & Grill is located at 3249 Glenwood-Lansing Road in Lansing.


Katie Arvia
Katie Arvia
Katie is a lifelong Lansing native who currently works full-time in marketing while also freelance reporting for The Lansing Journal. In 2015, she graduated with high honors from Saint Xavier University in Chicago with a BA in English, and she plans to pursue a Master's degree in the near future. Her favorite Lansing Journal assignments include coverage of TF South High School's walkout ("Demonstrating the possibilities") and her St. Patrick's Day interview with her grandma ("St. Patrick's Day traditions: reflections of an Irish granddaughter").