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Today in Aviation History APRIL 10 th
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1837 - The earliest known aeronautical experiment in Canada is conducted by Canadian schoolteacher John Rae. He successfully launches a paper balloon able to carry weight. Its lift is provided by the heating of its blackened surface by the sun. 

1892 - Birth of Paul Constant Homo, French WWI flying ace

1894 - Birth of Alwin Thurm, German WWI flying ace

1895 - Birth of Thomas Alfred Oliver, British WWI flying ace

1897 - Birth of William Hodgkinson, British WWI flying ace

1909 - 1st flight of the Fernandez No.1, early spanish biplane, Single engined driving 2 propellers.

1910 - 1st flight of the Clément-Bayard No.2, French military airship.

1913 - Birth of Yoshi-o Fukui, Sino-Japanese war and WWII japanese flying ace.

1917 - Elmer "Archie" Fowler Stone became the Coast Guard's 1st aviator upon graduating from flight training at Pensacola

1918 - Death of Walter Göttsch, German WWI fighter ace, killed in action in his Fokker Dr.I triplane.

1923 - Daimler Airways begins the 1st scheduled service between London and Berlin (via Bremen and Hamburg).

1930 - Dame Mary Russell, Duchess of Bedford, with her personal pilot C.D.Barnard and mechanic Robert Little, takes off for a  record-breaking flight from Lympne Airport to Cape Town, in the single-engined Fokker F.VII "Spider".

1933 - Francesco Agello sets a new speed record (over water) with a Macchi M.C. 72, experimental seaplane designed and built by the Italian aircraft company Macchi Aeronautica.

1933 - 1st flight of the Airspeed AS.5 Courier, British six seat single-engined light aircraft that saw some use as an airliner.

1940 - 16 Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm Blackburn Skua dive bombers sink the German light cruiser Königsberg at Bergen, Norway. It is the first time in history that dive bombers sink a major warship.

1941 - 1st flight of The Nakajima G5N Shinzan ("Mountain Recess"), four-engined long-range heavy bomber designed and built for the Imperial Japanese Navy prior to World War II. The Navy designation was "Experimental 13-Shi Attack Bomber"; the Allied code name was "Liz"

1942 - RCAF No. 132 (Fighter) Squadron was formed at Tofino, BC.

1944 - Death of Carlo Faggioni, Italian WWII most decorated Bomber pilot.

1945 - The Luftwaffe flies it's final sortie over England (with an Arado Ar 234 on a reconnaissance mission)

1945 - Death of Walther Wever,  German Luftwaffe WWII flying ace

1949 - 1st flight of the Armstrong Whitworth AW.55 Apollo, British airliner, (serial VX220) at Baginton.

1950 - Only Prototype single-seat carrier-based fighter aircraft SNCAC NC.1080 crashed during an air test flown by Pierre Gallay. The plane crashed for unknown reasons and further development was immediately halted.

1958 - 1st successful transition from vertical to horizontal and back to vertical flight of the Fairey Rotodyne, British compound gyroplane designed and built for commercial and military applications.

1959 - 1St flight of the Northrop T-38 Talon, American twin-engine supersonic jet trainer, 2 seats version.

1963 - 1st flight of The EWR VJ 101, experimental German jet fighter VTOL tiltjet aircraft.

1964 - Death of Eino Luukkanen, Finnish fighter ace in World War II. Luukkanen scored 56 confirmed victories, becoming Finland's 3rd highest ranking ace. He flew the Fokker D-21, Brewster B-239 Buffalo, and Bf 109G.

1967 – Gates Rubber Company acquires a controlling interest in Lear Jet Industries.

1972 - RCAF LCol Roy Windover awarded the Louis Bleriot medal by the FAI for reaching an altitude of 30,800 ft in a glider.

1973 - Invicta International Airways Flight 435, Vickers Vanguard 952, flying from Bristol Lulsgate to Basle-Mulhouse, ploughed into a snowy, forested hillside near Hochwald, Switzerland.

1976 - Air France opens its 2nd supersonic service, from Paris to Caracas, Venezuela; the Concorde takes six hours, including a stop at the Azores.

1976 - Death of Gerald Ewart Nash, Canadian WWI flying ace and high ranking officer in WWII

1979 - Launch of Soyuz 33, Soviet manned space flight to the Salyut 6 space station.

1979 - 1st flight of The Westland 30, British medium helicopter based on the Westland Lynx.

1981 - 1st flight of The Aermacchi S-211, italian jet-powered military trainer aircraft.

1982 - 1st flight of The Bombardier Challenger 601, evolution of the canadian business jet.

1994 - Westland Helicopters is acquired by GKN.

1996 - 1st flight of the Dassault 'Falcon' 50EX, French 3 engined business jet aircraft, evolution of the Falcon 50.

2003 - Air France and British Airways simultaneously announce that they would retire Concorde due to the crash of Air France Flight 4590 (July 25 2000), registration F-BTSC, in Gonesse.

2006 – A Kenyan Airforce Harbin Yunshuji Y-12-II crashes into a hillside on approaching an airstrip near Marsabit, Eastern Province, Kenya, killing 14 over 17.

2008 - Soyuz TMA-12 docks with Pirs, module of the International Space Station (ISS)

2010 – Polish Air Force Tu-154M crashes near Smolensk, Russia, killing all 96 people on board including President Lech Kaczynski.

2011 - Death of Violet "Vi" Cowden,  American aviator who served as a member of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) during WWII, she one of only 114 WASP to fly the fighter planes during the war, including the P-47 Thunderbolt, P-39 AiraCobra, P-63 Kingcobra, and her favorite and the "love of her life," the P-51 Mustang.