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until 1927. During this period Denehie also assisted DePalma's nepher, Peter DePaolo, in his racing program by special permission from Mr. Foy. In 1927 aviation called the Denehie again when he left the Reo organization to join his former associate, H. A. Sperl, to form the Sperl Aero Corporation in Los Angeles, where they established the West Coast distributorship for Curtiss and Lockheed planes throughout the states of California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. Land was leased, an airport established, hangars and shop facilities were erected and local dealers were soon assigned in the various states. They also set up and a flying school under Denehie's supervision. During this time they sold the famous "Winnie Mae: to Wiley Post, the plane that carried him on many renowned flights. Early in 1929 they gave up the Curtiss and Lockheed sales franchise and formed the Continental Air Express, Incorporated, operating from their airport, also continuing the flying school. The original airline operation was a daily schedule between Los Angeles and San Diego, flying single-engine Lockheed planes. Soon operations were expanded, adding schedules to Oakland, California, using Fokker and Ford tri-motored planes. It was not long until four other airlines were competing and it became a battle for business. As a result Continental was the first to serve a free lunch and hot coffee to patronage. At that time Denehie was Operations Manager and Chief Pilot of the company. More planes were soon needed to meet their growing business but before financing could be worked out the stock market crash prevented negotiations. Eastern finance became interested in the airline but did not want the Los Angeles flying school, so Denehie purchased the school equipment, with rights to use the field, to become owner and instructor of the Continental Air School in early 1930. Continental Air Express soon went out of business under the new management and the Los Angeles was under attachment. so Denehie moved his school to Las Vegas, Nevada. After some bad luck there he decided to sell out and dispose of his assets. Following this he became employed by the Pacific Finance Corporation of Los Angeles to liquidate a large inventory of repossessed commercial vehicles owned
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