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Chuck Yeager: First Pilot to Break the Sound Barrier
Chuck Yeager, an aviator and a test pilot, was born on February 13, 1923 in Myra, West Virginia. He was a fighter pilot during the World War II; he was also the first pilot to break the sound barrier when he flew the Bell X-1 rocket with a speed of 670 miles per hour in October 1947. Yeager underwent numerous Air Force Command missions from 1954 – 1962 and when he was 72 years old he broke the sound barrier for the last time, piloting his F-15 Eagle reaching a speed of Mach 1.45.
Chuck Yeager attended at Flight Performance School and graduated in 1946 and the year after he was picked to test pilot the Bell X-1 rocket. He named the jet “Glamorous Glennis” after his wife; he then achieved a maximum speed of 670 miles per hour on the 14th of October, which made him the first person to break the sound barrier.
For the next two years, Yeager along with his X-1 underwent over 40 flights together, and during this time, he frequently broke the sound barrier, achieving top speeds of 960 miles per hour in an altitude of 70,000 feet. For his flying accomplishments, he was awarded by General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, the chief of staff of the United States Air Force with the Mackay Trophy and was also given the Collier Trophy by President Harry Truman at the White House.
World War II and Beyond
During the Second World War, Yeager flew on a P-51 fighter jet. During one of his mission, he was gunned down in France, eluded capture and fled to Spain. He could have gone home, but he requested to be returned to combat, a request that even reached up to General Eisenhower. With his request granted, Yeager then immediately went back into the fighting, and in a single day, he was able to shot down 5 German fighter planes. After WWII, Yeager was the first American to pilot a Russian MIG, one that was taken by South Korea into custody from a North Korean defector.
During 1953, Yeager was able to break a new record at a speed of Mach 2, and because of this accomplishment, he was once again invited to the White House to be awarded the Harman International Trophy by President Eisenhower. He finally achieved a speed of 1,650 mph in an altitude of more than 90,000 feet, a deed that made him earn the Distinguished Service Medal.
Yeager underwent several Air Force Command mission from 1954 – 1962 and later worked as a vice commander of the Ramstein air base in Germany during 1968 to 1969, a U.S. defense representative in Pakistan from 1971 to 1973 and the director of aerospace safety in Norton Air Force Base in California from1973 to 1975.
Yeager made an autobiography, entitled Press On, which was published in 1985, the same year where he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. During the 14th of October 1997, to celebrate the 50th Year of Yeager breaking the speed of sound, the 74-year-old aviator flew to the skies once again and broke the speed of sound again. In Tom Wolfe’s book entitled The Right Stuff, Yeager appeared as the main character. And because of his prestige, he was able to make several commercial endorsements.
Chuck Yeager’s dedication to serving the country is truly commendable. His contributions to the Air Force and aviation history are unforgettable. Just like Yeager, Charter Flight Group’s dedication to delivering pleasurable private jet flights to its clients is admirable. Our top priority is always the satisfaction of our clients, by providing safe, cost-effective, prompt, and comfortable private jet flights. For your future private jet flights, consider Charter Flight Group. For queries, it is best to contact us!