Chuck Yeager, the historic take a look at pilot portrayed in the film “The Right Stuff,” is dead at the age of 97, in accordance to a tweet posted on his account late Monday.
“It’s w/ profound sorrow, I need to inform you that my life love Normal Chuck Yeager handed simply earlier than 9pm ET,” mentioned the tweet, attributed to his spouse, actress Victoria Scott D’Angelo. “An unbelievable life effectively lived, America’s biggest Pilot, & a legacy of energy, journey, & patriotism will likely be remembered eternally.”
The legendary pilot and retired brigadier common turned the first man to fly sooner than the velocity of sound on Oct. 14, 1947.
The flight in the Bell X-1, which noticed him journey to 700 miles per hour, launched the Area Age. However for Yeager, then 24, it was simply one other job for a younger take a look at pilot.
The rocket-propelled orange airplane was referred to as the “Glamorous Glennis” after Yeager’s first spouse, who handed away in 1990. The aviation feat, in the meantime, was stored secret for months.
He later obtained widespread recognition due to Tom Wolfe’s e book, ″The Proper Stuff,″ and the film based mostly on it, the place he was portrayed by actor Sam Shepard.
It advised the story of the first astronauts.
“I used to be the 1st Commandant of ARPS 1st college for coaching 1st astronauts,” Yeager wrote. “I’m totally conscious of US objectives: Presidents Eisenhower, JFK, Johnson & Nixon: US will get to the moon 1st. & we did. 1st step was getting above MACH 1. We did that 1st, too.”
Yeager was born on February 13, 1923, in Myra, W.Va. His household moved to Hamlin, a city of 400 individuals when he was 5, in accordance to his website. He graduated in 1941 and enlisted in the Military Air Corps that September.
In 1987, he returned to his hometown to mark the fortieth anniversary of his sound barrier feat.
″Little did I understand after I left this city to be part of the Military Air Corps in September 1941 … that I’d come again right here to see a statue of myself in entrance of Hamlin Excessive College, the place I spent so many depraved days,″ mentioned Yeager.
Yeager entered fight in February 1944 and claimed to have shot down one German plane, earlier than being shot down himself, on his eighth fight mission on Mar. 5. He evaded seize and rejoined his unit in England.
Blessed with distinctive imaginative and prescient, he totaled 12.5 aerial victories, “together with 5 Me109s on 12 October and 4 FW 190s on 27 November,” his web site added.
“That day was a fighter pilot’s dream. In the midst of a wild sky, I knew that dogfighting was what I used to be born to do,” he mentioned of the battles on Nov. 27.
Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va. referred to as him “an American hero.”
“West Virginia’s native son was bigger than life and an inspiration for generations of Individuals. He bravely served our nation as a pilot for greater than 30 years in the U.S. Air Pressure throughout World Warfare II and Vietnam,” Manchin wrote on Twitter.
“When @GenChuckYeager turned the first pilot to break the sound barrier he challenged every of us to take a look at the limits of what’s doable. I’m grateful to have gotten to know this legendary West Virginian and to name him my expensive pal,” Manchin continued.
The X-1 is at the moment on show at the Nationwide Air and Area Museum in Washington, D.C.
“We mourn the passing and rejoice the life and legacy of a pilot who actually had the proper stuff, Normal Chuck Yeager,” the Nationwide Air and Area Museum wrote on Twitter. “In 1947, Yeager broke the sound barrier and proved that we are able to at all times hold pushing additional and sooner.”
Fox News’ Chris Ciaccia and the Related Press contributed to this report