Bess “May Day” Collins was one of the best barnstormers in her day, and notable because she was one of the few female barnstormers on the circuit. In 1927, in the closing days of the barnstorming craze, she was making a routine flight from Shore City to a Middledale to compete in a flying circus when a blast of lead from a racketeer’s machine gun sent her airplane down into a swamp, the racketeers assuming she was a spy.
As her plane sunk into the muck, Bess found herself unable to release her restraints. As the water creeper higher, she discerned a glowing green mist surrounding her and closing in. Before she went under, she took a tremendous breath and the mist entered her body. As her head sank beneath the murky waters, the surrounding willows reached their boughs into the water and lifted plane and pilot out.
Bess now found herself transformed – able to speak to plants and command them. Communicating with the plants of the swamp, she discovered the whereabouts of the racketeers and thwarted their smuggling operation. Although the days of barnstorming are over, Bess still works as a pilot in her normal life, and as the super heroine May Day when evil rears its ugly head.