Carlos De Haya y Gonzalez de Ubieta was born in Bilbao on 1st March 1902, completing his Primary and Secondary education in the same city and gaining entrance to the Service Corps Academy of Avila at the age of 16. From there he graduated with the rank of second lieutenant, obtaining the second highest marks of the 1921 promotion.

He was a perfectionist. His most characteristic features being his clear intelligence and iron will. A studious man and perseverant worker, of a serious and introverted disposition, he was gifted with the ability to gain the affection of all those who came into contact with him. He was very human in his dealings with people and when he took someone into his confidence he was cheerful and waggish. At work, discipline was the order of the day, so much so that in Salamanca the medical staff in attendance on the Military aeronautics section came to feel a hearty loathing for him because he made them remain in their posts from 9 o’clock at night until 3 o’clock in the morning whilst the trainees were practising their night flying.

The same demands he made on people he directed towards the material, since the safety of any manoeuvre depended on it. The slightest fault in the aerodrome required its immediate rectification. Everything had to be in perfect working order.

During his student and working years he became a great specialist in Non-visibility flights and night landings. He carried out studies in depth on how to navigate by means of shadows and the projections of trees and other obstacles, and gliding in different types of planes, equipping the aerodromes for these kinds of flights.
His aeronautical life, which was remarkably intense, began on 30th March 1925 when he was selected for a piloting course at the Civil School of Albacete, going on to become in September of the same year a member of the 27th class of Military Pilots in Cuatro Vientos. From the moment of his first posting as an aviator in Melilla in February 1926, he formed part of a team of pilots of exceptional class and distinction, outstanding both in their professional activities and in their zeal for all things aeronautical, and whose members included Pedro Tauler, Joaquin García Morato, Luis Zubieta, Cipriano Rodríguez “Cucufate”, Rogelio Azaola and Alvaro Garcia Ogara with whom he enjoyed a close relationship all his life.
In July and August 1926 he took a course in piloting seaplanes at the school in Los Alcazares. On completion of this, he returned to Melilla and continued his service until the end of the campaign, proving himself at all times to be an officer and an airman possessed of a great sense of sacrifice, immense physical stamina, courage and skill. His training continued with courses in parachuting, radiotelegraphy and aeroplane mechanics – abilities that he was to develop constantly throughout his life.
He can also be regarded as an amateur artist of considerable note and had practised the art of pottery. In addition to this, he played the lute quite well. A person of artistic sensibility, a lover of the Arts, he spoke French and English and attended all the concerts he could. In Tablada he showed himself to be tireless, taking charge of a squadron to increase his professional expertise. During this time all the pilots transmitted “Don Quixote” to each other in Morse code, being radiotelegraph operators. Most of them were versed in astronomical navigation and knew how to use a sextant; they were totally engrossed in their activities and ignored family distractions in order to devote their lives to flying (Aeronautical Review Issue nº 282 and Astronomical Review).
Haya was undoubtedly a highly imaginative individual, who in certain cases solved problems in ingenious fashion by the simplest means; dropping food supplies and provisions on the Santuario de la Virgen de la Cabeza, he used a rope which ran from the cockpit and was attached to a bell. When activated by the captain, the bell rang beside the soldiers, who then proceeded to off-load the packages manually through the rear door of the aircraft.
On one occasion Ruiz de Alda invited him to follow his example and give up flying to dedicate his life to the political scene in the Spain immediately prior to 1936. Haya replied that his enthusiasm for everything relating to aeronautics was such that he would never abandon that profession, which serves to show how devoted he was to flying throughout his entire life.

Haya was an honourable man, possessed of a marked sense of duty and honour, which led him at all times to reject suspect dealings of any kind. His sporting spirit showed through on countless occasions, at times combined with a very high sense of responsibility and duty.

The story that best exemplifies this tells of when he was the official pilot of General Franco. Asked by Franco to take him on a personal flight, he refused owing to the dangerous weather conditions, only to subsequently do the same journey solo to demonstrate that his refusal was not prompted by lack of courage but rather an excellent perception of the responsibility involved. Professional and gentlemanly, he was a man of a serious disposition, tall and strongly built, whose regime consisted of constant effort and the exercise of an iron will. Disciplined, hard working and active as he was, Jesús Salas Larrazabal, in his brief biography says that “Haya, along with Ramon Franco and Morato, formed a trio that should have shaped the Spanish Air Force”.

All this information has been obtained from the following writings, books and encyclopaedias:
-Espasa-Calpe Encyclopaedia
- Aeronautical History Review (October 1987 issue nº 7/ November 1990 issue nº 8) R. de Madariaga.
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