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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1897 – Birth of John Joseph Seerley, Jr., American World War I flying ace who also served in World War II.

1916 – First flight of the Breguet 14, a French biplane bomber and reconnaissance aircraft; it is the first aircraft in mass production to use large amounts of metal rather than wood in its structure.

1943 – No. 1426 (Enemy Aircraft) Flight RAF, nicknamed “the Rafwaffe” (shown above), is formed to evaluate captured enemy aircraft and demonstrate their characteristics to other Allied units.

1981 – Aeroflot is banned from flying to the U.S., after an earlier Aeroflot flight that overflew American military installations, straying from its supposed flight path.

2004 – China Eastern Airlines Flight 5210, a Bombardier CRJ200, stalls and crashes near Baotou, China, shortly after takeoff because of frost contamination; all 53 on board and two people on the ground are killed.

2008 – Death of Alexander John “Al” Lilly, Canadian airliner pilot, chief test pilot of the Royal Air Force Ferry Command during World War II and vice president of Canadair; Lilly also was the first Canadian to break the sound barrier.

Updated: November 21, 2013 — 12:02 PM

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