Wright Brothers first flight to be honored on anniversary

Pilots from MacAir Aero Club in Greene County flew in formation over the Wright Brothers Memorial in 2015 where the 112th Anniversary of the the first powered airplane flight was remembered with speeches, a wreath laying and a written proclamation from then-President Obama declaring December 17 to be Wright Brothers Day. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

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Pilots from MacAir Aero Club in Greene County flew in formation over the Wright Brothers Memorial in 2015 where the 112th Anniversary of the the first powered airplane flight was remembered with speeches, a wreath laying and a written proclamation from then-President Obama declaring December 17 to be Wright Brothers Day. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

Organizations in both Ohio and North Carolina are joining forces Thursday to commemorate the Wright Brothers world-changing accomplishment.

Dayton’s Orville and Wilbur Wright sent a telegram from Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on Dec. 17, 1903, writing of their success that day. In celebration of First Flight, sites in Ohio and North Carolina will livestream various events and programming throughout the day, including a joint wreath-laying ceremony and flyover.

The majority of the programming will take place at Dayton’s Wright Brothers Memorial, which was dedicated on Aug. 19, 1940 with Orville Wright in attendance.

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The inaugural celebration of first flight was held on Dec. 17, 1978 and has been held annually ever since. The 88th Air Base Wing is responsible for the maintenance of the Wright Memorial.

Here’s the schedule of the day’s events:

8:30 a.m.: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Wind and Sand interpretive ranger program. Step back in history to learn more about the first powered flight in human history and how it came to pass.

9:30 a.m.: Virtual Celebration with a joint wreath-laying ceremony and flyover. Speakers include Brig. Gen. John Newberry, the Air Force Program Executive Officer for Bombers, Bomber Directorate, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. He is responsible for the sustainment and modernization of the bombers portfolio, which includes the B-1, B-2, and B-52. He is also responsible for organizing, training, and equipping the Center’s B-21 Systems Program Office.

It also features Wright Brothers National Memorial Superintendent David Hallac, Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park Superintendent Kendell Thompson, the United States Air Force Band of Flight and photographer, author and historian Dan Patterson.

Remarks will be followed by the unveiling of the Paul E. Garber First Flight Shrine portrait and a joint wreath-laying ceremony featuring descendants of the Wright brothers and descendants of the witnesses of the first flight. The flyover of the B-1B Lancer will occur at 10:35 a.m. to close out the celebration.

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Noon: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Interview with Tom Crouch, curator emeritus of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

1:30 p.m.: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Wright Legacy interpretive ranger program. Twelve seconds was all the Wright brothers needed to show humans can fly. Discover what inspired Wilbur and Orville and how they are remembered in the world today.

2 p.m.: National Aviation Heritage Area Facebook Page. Video of Ohio elected officials’ remarks including Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), and Rep. Mike Turner (OH-10).

2:30 p.m.: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Interview with Greg Principato, president of the National Aeronautic Association.

4:30 p.m.: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Sunset view of Wright Brothers National Memorial, weather permitting.

7 p.m.: Wright Brothers National Memorial Facebook Page. Livestream of the Kill Devil Hills fireworks at Avalon Pier.

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