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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1915 – Birth of Hidaka Hatsuo, Japanese Russo-Japanese War and World War II flying ace.

1918 – Canadian World War I fighter ace Alfred Clayburn Atkey and his observer, British fighter ace Charles George Gass, score five victories on a single mission with their Bristol F.2b.

1940 – A Bristol Beaufort torpedo bomber of the Royal Air Force Coastal Command drops the first 2,000-pound bomb to be delivered by the service during World War II. The target is an enemy cruiser near Nordeney, but the weapon misses the warship.

1944 – First flight of the Beechcraft XA-38 Grizzly, an American twin-engine, ground-attack prototype; it is fitted with a forward-firing 75mm cannon to attack heavily armored targets.

1992 – The Space Shuttle Endeavour (shown), NASA’s fifth and final operational shuttle, is launched on its first mission (STS-49).

2004 – Death of William J. “Pete” Knight, U.S. politician, combat pilot, test pilot, and astronaut. Knight holds the world’s speed record for flight in a winged and powered aircraft.

Updated: May 7, 2015 — 3:12 AM

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