Chuck Yeager/BOOM! Day


I won’t let the whole day go by without a nod to one of my heroes, Chuck Yeager.  On October 14, 1947, Yeager pushed the Bell X-1 just a little faster than the flight plan called for, and broke the sound barrier, over Edwards Air Force Base, California.

Brig. Gen. Chuck Yeager, recipient of the Congressional Silver Medal of Honor.  MedalofHonor.com

Chuck Yeager and a modern aircraft -- yes, he's flown it, too.

 

Last year, belatedly, I got around to posting on the flight, and on Yeager, and on the deeper meaning of flight records and the space race on the psyche of America in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.  More details and sources there.  It’s a year later, Yeager is 85, but the story still gets me the same way.  Just over a year ago, Yeager flew in a fighter and broke the sound barrier again, one of the oldest people ever to do that.

You could fly your flag in his honor.  If there’s a stiff breeze when you do, the ends of the flag will snap in the wind — they break the sound barrier, and you hear the report.  Wonderfully appropriate, don’t you think?

Here’s a salute to you, Chuck Yeager!

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One Response to Chuck Yeager/BOOM! Day

  1. Ediacaran says:

    Thanks for the reminder of this important milestone, Ed.

    Not to detract from Yeager’s achievement, but here’s an example of a little story of an earlier flight at Muroc/Edwards the aviation historians may want to check into before potential witnesses all die and the past slides too far for verification:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Welch_(pilot)

    I’ve also read accounts of fatal flights that potentially broke the sound barrier prior to Yeager’s feat, but can’t get my hands on those at the moment.

    I just wanted to raise these issues to picque the interest of the historians and history educators here.

    More about the history of Muroc/Edwards AFB at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muroc

    Like

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