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On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1904 – Birth of Karlis Irbitis, Latvian aeroplane designer.

1918 – Australian World War I fighter ace Francis Ryan “Frank” Smith shoots down four Fokker D.VIIs with his Royal Aircraft Factory S.E.5a, his last victories of the war.

1947 – U.S. Air Force Capt. Charles “Chuck” Yeager becomes the first person to fly faster than sound. Yeager “breaks the sound barrier” in his Bell X-1 “Glamorous Glennis” (shown); he reaches 670 mph or Mach 1.015 at an altitude of 45,000 feet (13,700 m) at Muroc Dry Lake, Calif.

1964 – First flight of the Sikorsky CH-53 Sea Stallion, an American heavy-lift transport helicopter developped for the U.S. Marine Corps.

1980 – Death of Francesco Pricolo, Italian aviator, aeronautical engineer and chief of staff of the Italian Regia Aeronautica during the World War II.

2011 – A Moremi Air Cessna 208B Grand Caravan crashes shortly after take-off from Xakanaka Airstrip, Botswana, killing eight of 12 onboard.

Updated: October 14, 2014 — 12:16 PM

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