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Looking Back at Kitty Hawk

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In many ways, today may be the most important day on Southwest Airlines’ calendar because it marks the 109th anniversary of the date that humans took to the air in powered, controlled flight.  After all, without airplanes, you can’t have airlines.  While the problems of controlled flight would probably been solved sooner or later, the Wright Brothers did it first, and the aviation timeline begins on December 17, 1903 at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.  Orville Wright became the world’s first airplane pilot that raw, brisk day along the North Carolina Coast as his brother Wilbur watched.  Orville’s first flight covered 120 feet and lasted 12 seconds.  In other words, it took him 12 seconds to fly the equivalent distance of a 737-800 fuselage.  So as you go about your duties today, take a moment to stop and reflect on what a wonder the gift of flight really is and consider the progress we have made in such a relatively short time.