COLUMBUS, Ohio—State Representative Rick Perales is working to have Ohio formally recognize August 19 as National Aviation Day. On Wednesday, Dec. 10—a week before the 111th anniversary of the Wright brothers’ first powered flights—Perales testified on behalf of House Bill 583 at its first hearing in the State and Local Government Commmittee.
Orville Wright, who invented the airplane with his older brother Wilbur, was born in his West Dayton home on Aug. 19 in 1871. He made the first of the brothers’ four successful powered flight at Kitty Hawk, N.C., on Dec. 17, 1903. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared the date National Aviation Day in 1939 with a presidential proclamation.
“Ohio natives Orville and Wilbur Wright’s innovative thinking changed the world with powered flight in 1903,” Perales said in prepared testimony. He noted that following their four flights at Kitty Hawk, the Wright brothers continued their experiments in Ohio on Huffman Prairie, now a part of Wight-Patterson Air Force Base and a unit of the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Historical Park.
Since then, Ohio has continued to be a leader in aviation and aerospace with “countless aviation and aeronautic inventions and research,” Perales said. Huffman Prairie lies within Perales’ district in Greene County.