INDUCTED POSTHUMOUSLY FIRST WOMAN GETS AEROSPACE HONOR.
LANCASTER -- The Aerospace Walk of Honor posthumously got its first woman inductee: Jacqueline Cochran, who pulled herself out of poverty to become a record-setting pilot and the first woman to break the sound barrier.
Cochran, who died in 1980, was represented at Saturday's ceremony by famed test pilot Chuck Yeager, a 1990 Walk inductee who flew a chase plane for Cochran on several of her record-setting flights in the 1950s and 1960s.
Other honorees were test pilots Mervin Evenson, John Hardy Griffith, Fred Knox Jr. and Emil ``Ted'' Sturmthal. The five plaques unveiled in Boeing Plaza bring the number of pilots with monuments along Lancaster Boulevard to 85.
Cochran grew up in poverty in northern Florida but developed a chain of beauty shops and later an international line of cosmetics.
Cochran became a pilot in the 1930s and is credited with the idea of creating the Women Airforce Service Pilots, or WASPs, who took on noncombat military flying duties during World War II.
In 1971, Cochran became the first living woman inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame.
Evenson, a retired Air Force colonel, was the first military test pilot to fly the F-4C Phantom. He also tested various other aircraft, including the YF-12 Blackbird prototype and the B-1A and B-1B bombers.
Griffith, a World War II combat pilot, flew early experimental aircraft including the X-1 and D-558-2 rocket planes and the X-4 and D-558-1 jets.
He served as a research pilot for the High Speed Flight Research Unit operated by NASA's predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, at what is now Edwards Air Force Base.
Knox led the flight-test effort to develop several new aircraft, including the X-31 research aircraft and the Boeing X-32 joint strike fighter. A Navy veteran, he flew F-14 Tomcat fighter jets off aircraft carriers.
Sturmthal, a retired Air Force colonel who died in 1982, flew the Mach 3 XB-70 bomber at Edwards and later was a test pilot of the B-1A bomber.
(1 -- color in AV edition only) John Hardy Griffith, Fred Knox, Marcy Sturmthal (the widow of Col. Emil Sturmthal), Col. Mervin Evenson and Chuck Yeager admire the plaques of the new inductees to the Aerospace Walk of Honor in Lancaster on Saturday.
(2 -- color in AV edition only) Chuck Yeager, left, talks to new inductees in the Aerospace Walk of Honor: Col. Mervin Evenson, center, and John Hardy Griffith, in Lancaster.
Jeff Goldwater/Staff Photographer
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Publication:||Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)|
|Date:||Sep 17, 2006|
|Previous Article:||EDITORIAL WEEK IN REVIEW.|
|Next Article:||REAL ESTATE DOWN A BIT, DATA SHOW SOME SAY IT'S NORMALIZING.|