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Know It All
June 22, 2013, 05:00 AM

Robert Cocking (1776-1837) suffered the first recorded parachute fatality in 1837. He jumped from a hot air balloon 5,000 feet over London using a cone shape parachute of his own design. It did not open.

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German engineer Otto Lilienthal (1848-1896) designed the first hang glider that could fly a person. He died during a test flight. His dying words were “Opfer müssen gebracht werden,” German for “Sacrifices must be made.”

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Professional hang glider Manfred Ruhmer, of Austria, holds the world record for longest distance traveled in a hang glider. In 2001 he glided for 437 miles in a flight over Texas.

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In 1910, Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) became the first president to fly in an airplane.

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The first flight attendant was 25-year-old Ellen Church (1904-1965) of Iowa. Church, a registered nurse, had the idea that a medically trained female on board a plane would help soothe nervous passengers. United Airlines agreed and hired her in 1930.

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Mattel introduced Stewardess Barbie in 1961. She wore an American Airlines uniform.

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The Hooters restaurant chain expanded their business in 2003 to include an airline. Hooter girls, dressed in uniforms of orange shorts and tank tops, entertain passengers with trivia contests and charades during flights. It ceased operations in 2006.

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The first successful takeoff of a seaplane from water took place in 1910 in France. Pilot Henri Fabre (1882–1984) nicknamed his plane “Le Canard, “ French for “The Duck.”

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Can you name the pilot nicknamed Lady Lindy who disappeared in 1937? See answer at end.

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The Airbus A380 is the world’s largest airliner. The plane has seats for 525 passengers and cost $13 billion to build.

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Before founding the Boeing Airplane Company in 1917, William E. Boeing (1881-1956) was successful in the timber industry. After he resigned as chairman of the aviation company in 1934, Boeing raised thoroughbred horses on his farm near Seattle, Wash.

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The U.S. government has two Boeing 747 aircraft that are used for Air Force One; presidential air transport. The tail numbers on the planes are 28000 and 29000.

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Orville Wright (1871-1948) and his brother Wilbur (1867-1912) did not have middle names, nor did any of their five siblings.

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License plates in North Carolina say “First in Flight.” It is in reference to the Wright brothers’ first successful airplane flight near Kitty Hawk, N.C., on Dec. 17, 1903.

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The 1903 Wright Flyer plane has been on permanent display at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum since 1948. Prior to that it was at the Science Museum in London.

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Answer: Amelia Earhart (1897-1937) was the first woman to fly solo over the Atlantic Ocean. Her nickname Lady Lindy was in reference to Charles Lindbergh (1902-1974), the first man to fly solo across the Atlantic. Earhart disappeared in 1937 somewhere around the South Pacific near the end of her attempted flight around the world.

Know It All is by Kerry McArdle. It runs in the weekend and Wednesday editions of the Daily Journal. Questions? Comments? Email knowitall@smdailyjournal.com or call 344-5200 ext. 114.

 

 

Tags: first, flight, plane, boeing, airplane, glider,


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