On This Day…December 17th
There is a real beauty in this colourised photo of Wilbur (running along the wingtip) and Orville Wright (piloting) during their historic flight on December 17th, 1903.
Below is a copy of the telegram sent by Orvelle (sic) excitedly confirming their iconic flight.
German infantry troops examine a disabled T-34 Russian tank in Verkhne-Kumsky during operation ‘Winter Storm’, 17 December 1942. The German 4th Panzer Batallion unsuccessfully tried to break the Red Army encirclement of the surrounded 6th Army during the Battle of Stalingrad.
Today in 1944 Richard Ira Bong claimed his last aerial victory of his 40 ‘kills’ when he shot down a Ki-43 ‘Oscar’ in his P- 38 Lightning, ‘Marge’.
The Douglas DC-3 flies for the first time, December 17th, 1935.
December 17th, 1944 was one of the darkest days of a terrible battle. During the Battle of the Bulge, members of the Kampfgruppen Peiper combat unit (1st SS Panzer Division) systematically and deliberately executed 84 US prisoners of war near the Belgian town of Malmedy. It was an event that led to US reprisals and took the fighting to even deeper levels of bitterness that extended beyond the war into the War Crimes trials in Dachau, 1946.
Bringing us back to Wilbur and Orville, this is a commemorative flypast over the ‘Wright Memorial (pictured in a previous ‘On This Day’) by F4U-4 Corsair fighters of US Marine Corps squadron VMF-212 – Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, United States. Photo taken 17th December, 1948.