On This Day in Aviation History

On This Day in Aviation History

1896 – Birth of Harold Anthony “Doc” Oaks, a Canadian World War I flying ace and bush aviation pioneer.

1919 – First flight of the Sopwith Snark (shown above), a prototype British triplane fighter.

1941 – Alma Heflin, first American female test pilot for standard production aircraft, made her first test flight for the Piper Aircraft Corp. of Lock Haven, Pa.

1972 – Hijacked Southern Airways Flight 49, a Douglas DC-9, lands in Havana, Cuba, where the terrorists are jailed by Fidel Castro; at one point, the flight threatens to crash into the nuclear installation at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.

1996 – Saudi Arabian Airlines Flight 763, a Boeing 747, and Kazakhstan Airlines Flight 1907, an Ilyushin Il-76 cargo jet, collide in mid-air near New Delhi, killing 349.

2005 – Death of Richard Earl “Dick” Lawyer, a U.S. Air Force astronaut, test pilot and combat veteran.

Updated: November 12, 2013 — 12:14 PM
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