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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1918 – Death of Peter Strasser, chief commander of German Imperial Navy Zeppelins during World War I; he is killed while flying the war’s last airship raid over Great Britain in Zeppelin L-70. The airship is shot down by an Airco DH.4 reconnaissance biplane.

1945 – A U.S. Boeing B-29 Superfortress “Enola Gay” drops “Little Boy,” the first nuclear weapon used in warfare over the Japanese city of Hiroshima; the bombing hastens the end of World War II in the Pacific.

1959 – Birth of Mark Hanna, British Royal Air Force pilot; he also was a top display pilot of historic military aircraft until his death in an Hispano Buchon, a Spanish-built version of the World War II Messerschmitt Bf 109, in 1999.

1964 – The first North Vietnamese Air Force jet fighter unit, Fighter Regiment No. 921 (the “Red Star Squadron”), arrives in North Vietnam after training in the People’s Republic of China; it brings 36 Mikoyan Gurevich MiG-17 and MiG-19 fighters to Phúc Yên airfield near Hanoi.

1996 – First flight of the Kawasaki OH-1 “Ninja” (shown), a Japanese light military reconnaissance helicopter.

2005 – Tuninter Flight 1153, an ATR-72 heading from Italy to Tunisia, runs out of fuel and crashes into the Mediterranean Sea, killing 16 of 39 aboard.


Updated: August 6, 2014 — 11:49 AM

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