Before Lindbergh and Earhart, Michigan pilot launched commercial air freight industry

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In the history of aviation, Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart get most of the glory as pioneering pilots. But this year, as you’re getting ready to ship your Christmas gifts to loved ones far away, take a moment to think about a hometown hero.  Current State’s Kevin Lavery brings you the story of Philip Parmelee, who made the very first air cargo flight.

The entire global air freight industry can be traced back to one man, a daring pilot who once lived just 20 miles from Lansing’s airport. Philip Parmelee grew up in St. Johns. He learned to fly from Orville Wright himself. And, on November 7, 1910, Parmelee carried a bundle of silk cloth in an hour-long flight whose details have been largely forgotten.

Current State’s Kevin Lavery spoke with Pete and Alice Murphy. They’re a retired couple from St. Johns who share a passion for aviation.

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