On This Day in Aviation History NOVEMBER 9th

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1891 - Birth of William P.A. 'Bill' Straith, Early Canadian Aviator, Aircraft designer and airline manager.

1892 - Birth of William Calvin Maxwell, American pilot in the United States Army Air Service.

1897 - Birth of Ernest James Salter, Canadian WWI flying ace who served as bombing instructor in WWII -

1898 - Birth of Mario Pezzi, famous Italian aviator.

1904 - Wilbur Wright flies his Wright Flyer II for 5 minutes, 4 seconds over Huffman Prairie, Ohio, covering 2 ¾ miles.

1906 - Birth of Arthur Louis Hugo Rudolph, German rocket engineer who played a key role in the development of the V-2 rocket, becoming a pioneer of the United States space program after the war.

1913 - The Grahame-White Type X Charabanc (or Aerobus) wins the 1913 Michelin Cup, covering a distance of 300 miles.

1918 - Birth of Thomas W. Ferebee who was the bombardier aboard the B-29 Superfortress, Enola Gay, that dropped the atomic bomb, "Little Boy", on Hiroshima

1918 - Death of Robert Joseph Collier, American aviator, editor of Collier's Weekly and president of the Aero Club of America.

1927 - Death of Campbell Mackenzie-Richards, pioneer English aviator, Royal Air Force test pilot, and air race contestant, bailing out too close from ground after he ran out of fuel while testing experimental night navigation devices.

1929 - Death of Guido Keller, Italian WWI pilot, poet and adventurer.

1929 - Death of Carl Benjamin Eielson, American aviator, bush pilot and explorer, in an air crash while flying across the Bering Strait to Siberia, in an attempt to deliver supplies to an ice-bound ship. -

1930 - Roy W. Ammel takes off with the lockeed explorer 'Blue Flash' for the 1st non-stop flight from New York to Panama.

1931 - French aviatrix Maryse Hilsz sets a flying distance record flying From Paris to Saigon and Back with a Gipsy Moth.

1932 - Wolfgang von Gronau and crew in a Dornier Wal "Gronland-Wal" complete the 1st flight around the world by a seaplane. Their flight took 111 days.

1939 - 1st flight of the Heinkel He 177 Greif (Griffin), only operational long-range bomber to be operated by the Luftwaffe.

1943 - Death of Yoshihiko Nakada, Japanese WWII fighter ace, killed in action

1944 - 1st flight of The Boeing C-97 Stratofreighter, american long range heavy military cargo aircraft based on the B-29 bomber.

1945 – Disregarding advice from Eric "Winkle" Brown of the Fleet Air Arm (FAA), to treat the rudder of the Heinkel He 162 with suspicion due to a number of in-flight failures, RAF pilot, Flt. Lt. R. A. Marks, starts a low-level roll during the Farnborough Air Show, one of the fin and rudder assemblies breaks off, the aircraft crashes in Aldershot before the ejection seat could be employed, killing Marks.

1946 - 1st flight of The Lockheed R6V Constitution, American large, propeller-driven, double-decker transport aircraft developed as a long-range, high capacity transport and airliner for the U.S. Navy and Pan American Airways.

1950 - Early in the Korean War, Lieutenant Commander William T. Amen scored the 1st combat jet-on-jet kill of the US Navy, downing a Soviet MiG-15 while flying a Panther from the USS Philippine Sea (CV-47).

1961 - Major Robert White attains a speed of 6,587kph (4093mph) in a North American X15A.

1967 – NASA launches the unmanned Apollo 4 test spacecraft atop the 1st Saturn V rocket from Cape Kennedy, Florida.

1970 - Death of Carl "Charly" Degelow, German WWI fighter ace, last German pilot and final German serviceman to be awarded the Blue Max. -

1978 - 1st flight of The 1st converted McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) YAV-8B Harrier II, second-generation vertical/short takeoff and landing (V/STOL) ground-attack aircraft, Anglo-American development of the British Hawker Siddeley Harrier and final member of the Harrier family. This prototype featured new wings, modified intakes, redesigned exhaust nozzles, and other aerodynamic refinements.

1979 - Death of Iris Louise McPhetridge Thaden, American aviation pioneer, holder of numerous aviation records, and 1st woman to win the Bendix Trophy.

1980 - Last paying passenger flight of the de Havilland Comet 4C (G-BDIW), flies from London Gatwick. On board are air enthusiasts commemorating the 1st flight of a Comet 30 years previously.

1981 - Death of Henry Potez, French aircraft industrialist.

1981 - Death of Frank Joseph Malina, American aeronautical engineer and painter.

1999 - TAESA Flight 725 McDonnell-Douglas DC-9-31F stalled and crashed a few minutes after leaving the Uruapan Airport en-route to Mexico City. 18 people were killed in the accident.

2005 – The Venus Express mission of the European Space Agency (1st Venus exploration mission of the ESA) is launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.