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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1863 – Birth of Henry Ford, American industrialist, founder of the Ford Motor Co., and sponsor of the development of the assembly line technique of mass production; he also designed the famous Ford Trimotor.

1918 – American pilot Walter Carl Simon and Scottish observer William Watson Smith score five kills with their Royal Flying Corps Bristol F.2b biplane on a single mission during World War I.

1935 – U.S. Navy Lt. Frank Akers becomes the first person to make a blind landing at sea. His Berliner-Joyce OJ-2 biplane has a hooded cockpit allowing him to see only his controls and instruments as he lands on the U.S.S. Langley.

1959 – First flight of the Northrop N-156F (shown above), a U.S. light supersonic fighter aircraft and the prototype of the Northrop F-5A Freedom Fighter.

1970 – Operation Rimon 20 begins; in an aerial battle between the Israeli Air Force against Soviet fighter pilots stationed in Egypt during the War of Attrition, five Soviet-flown Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21s are downed by Israeli McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantoms and Dassault Mirage IIIs.

2001 – Death of Ennio “Banana” Tarantola, a Spanish War and World War II Italian flying ace.

Updated: July 30, 2013 — 11:42 AM

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