Was Rudolph Valentino investing heavily in the first air service planned between Los Angeles and Mexico? Was he part of a syndicate formed to create the new venture? I think he was.
In the accounting ledgers which I recovered/discovered from George Ullman's Appeals Court Records, a "Lee C. Balch" was being paid what then amounted to an enormous amount of money in July and August of 1926. Within a year and a half, Lee C. Balch's "Latin American Air Transport Company" was in the news when they collaborated with Pickwick Latin American Airways and expanded service to Central America.
Was this one of the investments Natacha wrote about? She alleged Rudy was taken advantage of by investors and she acted as a front line protecting him in this because she felt he was unable to say no. Maybe this was a solid venture and a profitable investment or would have been had Valentino lived.
Below I share a few pages from the Falcon Lair ledgers to see the payments made to Mr. Balch and his Latin American Airways Transport. And remember that the exchange rate for those amounts is times 15 today.
Arizona Daily Star, November 30, 1928