Chuck Yeager Wiki – Chuck Yeager Biography
Chuck Yeager, the first person to break the speed of sound, died on Monday at the age of 97.
“ It’s a deep sadness, I must say my love of life General Chuck Yeager passed just before ET hour, ” his wife Victoria Scott D’Angelo said on Twitter.
‘An amazing life, America’s greatest Pilot and a legacy of power, adventure and patriotism will be remembered forever,’ he added.
He did not specify the cause of death.
Yeager is considered one of the greatest fighter pilots to have ever lived – he shot down at least 11 enemy aircraft in World War II and became the first pilot to break the sound speed in the experimental Bell X-1 survey in 1947. the plane is helping pave the way for the US space program.
Of course I was worried, ‘he said in 1968. When you’re making fun of something you don’t know much about, it’s time to worry. But you don’t let this affect your business. ‘
The humble Yeager said in 1947 that if the plane had carried more fuel, it would have gone even faster. He said the ride was ‘nice like riding fast in a car’.
Yeager named his rocket plane and all of his other planes ‘Charming Glennis’ for his wife, who died in 1990.
“Space, Star Wars, satellites opened,” Yeager said in an interview with AFP in 2007.
He went on to be a test pilot, broke numerous records for speed and altitude, and then fought in Vietnam.
Yeager retired in 1975, but did not slow down. He did it again as a passenger in the F-15, at the age of 89, on the 65th anniversary of his breaking the speed of sound.
It was immortalized in Tom Wolfe’s The Right Stuff, which was transformed into a 1983 Oscar-winning film starring Sam Shepard as Yeager.
NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine mourned the ‘tremendous loss’ of Yeager and praised the pilot’s ‘pioneering and innovative spirit’.
“Chuck’s courage and achievements are a testament to the enduring strength that made him a true American original, and NASA’s Aviation studies owe a lot to his brilliant contributions to aviation science,” Bridenstine said in a statement Monday.
His path has paved the way for anyone who wants to push the limits of human potential, and their success will guide us for generations to come.
Yeager’s friend and ground crew chief John Nicoletti told CNN Monday night, ‘This is a sad day for America. After breaking the sound barrier, we all have the permission to overcome the barriers. Yeager never gave up. He was an incredibly brave man. ‘
“In the age of media-made heroes, he’s the real deal,” said Jim Young, Edwards Air Force Base historian, at the opening of Yeager’s bronze statue in August 2006.
“He was the most honest of those who knew the right thing,” said Major General Curtis Bedke, commander of the Edwards Air Force Flight Test Center.
Born in February 1923 to a farmer in Myra, West Virginia, he lived his first military life as a teenager and attended the Citizen Military Training Camp in Indiana.
“What really strikes me when I look at it all these years is how lucky I was, for example, to be born in 1923 and not in 1963, so I got old as aviation itself entered the modern age,” Yeager said. In a speech delivered at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in December 1985.
‘I was just a lucky kid who caught the right drive,’ he said.
At the age of 22, he married Glennis, with whom he would have four children.
The couple was married for 45 years until they died of cancer in 1990. He married his second wife Victoria in 2003.
Yeager was enlisted in September 1941, but was not accepted for flight training, initially giving his age and training background.
But when the US entered the war three months later, the Air Force changed its requirements and Yeager was accepted thanks to his remarkable 20/10 sight that once allowed him to shoot a deer at 600 meters.
Yeager was originally a flight technician before being given wings.
His first mission was in Britain, where he flew P-51 Mustangs with the 363d Fighter Squadron.
On his eighth mission, in March 1944, he was shot over France. He was rescued by the French Resistance, taken to Spain, and stayed with the guerrillas for two months to help them make bombs.
Yeager would be awarded the Bronze Star for his efforts in France and Spain, when he helped another crashed pilot, B-17 bombardier Omar ‘Pat’ Patterson, to cross the Pyrenees when he was suffering from hypothermia.
He returned to the U.K. in May 1944.
Yeager was not supposed to fly over enemy territory again: having been shot down once, the fear was that if he was shot down again he could give away information about the Resistance.
However Yeager and another ‘evader’, as the pilots who were shot down and escaped were known, pleaded their case directly before Dwight Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander, and convinced him to allow them to fly again.
Four months later, in October 1944, he became the first pilot in his group to make ‘ace in a day’ – becoming an ‘ace’ by shooting down five planes, but doing it in only one day.
Two of the five planes were downed without firing a single shot: Yeager maneuvered into a firing position, and the German pilot panicked, swerving his Messerschmitt Bf 109 into his wingman and the two planes crashing.
Yeager was clear-eyed about the cost of war.
In his 1968 memoir, he wrote that ‘atrocities were committed by both sides’.
He was part of a mission with orders to ‘strafe anything that moved’, an wrote: ‘I’m certainly not proud of that particular strafing mission against civilians. But it is there, on the record and in my memory.’
After the war, Yeager, as an ‘evader’ was given his choice of assignments and chose Wright Field, to be close to his West Virginia home.
He became a test pilot, and was selected for the attempt to break the sound barrier in the Bell X-1 which, like all his planes, he named Glamorous Glennis after his wife.
It was a risky venture, but Yeager was determined to claim the record.
Two days before the due date he fell from a horse and broke two ribs. Yeager didn’t tell his bosses.
He went to see a local doctor, rather than the military specialists, who taped him up as best he could. He only told his wife and another test pilot, who helped him rig up a way to close the X-1’s hatch with a broom handle, because he was in so much pain.
The record was broken
above the Mojave Desert in October 1947, but was not announced to the public until June 1948.
A B-29 bomber carried the X-1 26,000 feet (7,925 m) over California’s Mojave Desert and let it go. Neither Yeager nor aviation engineers knew if the plane – or the pilot – would be able to handle the unprecedented speed without breaking up. But Yeager took the 31-foot (10 meter) X-1, powered by liquid oxygen and alcohol, to Mach 1.06, about 700 mph (1,126 kph) at 43,000 feet (13,000 meters), as if it were a routine flight.
He then calmly brought the craft gliding down to a dry lake bed, 14 minutes after it had been cut loose on a flight that was a significant step toward space exploration.
Yeager said he had noted a Mach 0.965 reading on his speedometer before it jumped off the scale without a bump.
‘I was thunderstruck,’ he wrote in his 1985 autobiography ‘Yeager.’ ‘After all the anxiety, breaking the sound barrier turned out to be a perfectly paved speedway.’
His exploit ranked alongside the Wright brothers’ first flight at Kitty Hawk in 1903 and Charles Lindbergh’s solo fight to Paris in 1927 as epic events in the history of aviation.
In 1950, Yeager’s X-1 plane, which he christened Glamorous Glennis, honoring his wife, went on display at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Washington.
Yeager was unfazed by having a job that took him to the brink of death with every outing – such as the 1953 flight on which he safely landed his X-1A after hitting Mach 2.4 and then losing control of the aircraft for 51 seconds.
‘It’s your duty to fly the airplane,’ he told an interviewer. ‘If you get killed in it, you don’t know anything about it anyway so why worry about it?’
And Yeager kept breaking records.
He was the first American to fly a MiG-15, after the pilot defected to South Korea.
In 1953 he was a support pilot for the first female pilot to fly faster than the speed of sound, and in the same year he also flew at twice the speed of sound – although he was not the first to do so.
During the flight he very nearly lost control at 80,000 feet, owing to a phenomena called ‘inertia coupling’.
With the aircraft rolling in the sky, swiveling around and bucking wildly he dropped 51,000 feet in less than a minute before regaining control at around 29,000 feet, then landing smoothly. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal in 1954 for the feat.
By 1962 Yeager was a colonel, and was made the first commander of the Aerospace Research Pilot School, which helped train NASA astronauts.
Even the men who walked on the moon were said to look up to the unassuming West Virginian.
Yeager himself had only a high school education, so he was not eligible to become an astronaut like those he trained.
When war broke out in Vietnam, Yeager was once again flying combat missions.
He eventually became a brigadier general, and retired in 1975.
In 1983 his exploits were immortalized in the Tom Wolfe book The Right Stuff, which was turned into an Oscar-winning film.
Yeager was played by Sam Shepard, but had a cameo in the film.
In his memoir, Yeager said he was annoyed when people asked him if he had the right stuff, since he felt it implied a talent he was born with.
‘All I know is I worked my tail off learning to learn how to fly, and worked hard at it all the way,’ he wrote. ‘If there is such a thing as the right stuff in piloting, then it is experience. The secret to my success was that somehow I always managed to live to fly another day.’
He kept on flying, and breaking records, as a test pilot for 30 years after he retired.
Yeager was awarded the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal and the Purple Heart. President Harry S. Truman awarded him the Collier air trophy in December 1948 for his breaking the sound barrier. He also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1985.
Yeager retired from the Air Force in 1975 and moved to a ranch in Cedar Ridge in Northern California where he continued working as a consultant to the Air Force and Northrop Corp. and became well known to younger generations as a television pitchman for automotive parts and heat pumps.
In 2012 he flew, aged 89, at the speed of sound as a passenger in an F-15.
Yeager became something of a social media sensation in 2016 at age 93 when he began fielding questions from the public on Twitter and responding in a curt and sometimes curmudgeonly manner. When asked what he thought about the moon, he replied, ‘It’s there.’