December 17 is now officially “Wright Brothers Day,” in honor of Orville and Wilbur Wright.
Nearly 120 years ago today, Orville and Wilbur Wright successfully flew — for the first time ever — the ‘Wright Flyer’ over the skies of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
President Joe Biden announced the news Thursday:
“NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim December 17, 2022, as Wright Brothers Day.”
The Wright Brothers’ legacy
The Ohio natives were “afflicted” with the belief that humans could fly, according to Wilbur.
They researched and experimented, redesigned and repaired, and braved dangerous early trials.
“We celebrate the ingenuity and perseverance of Orville and Wilbur Wright, whose aircraft expanded the limits of human discovery and lifted this nation to new heights,” Biden said.
“Since that day, ground-breaking discoveries in American air and space technology have been made. Not only have we put a man on the moon, but we’ve achieved powered flight on Mars. We’ve been able to open make ground-breaking discoveries into the history of our universe by launching the most powerful deep-space telescope ever sent into space.”
“As inheritors of game-changing innovations and torch-bearers of the spirit of American ingenuity, we have so much to be proud of and so much to look forward to,” Biden said.
Air travel today
Biden said the United States strives to carry on the Wright Brothers’ legacy by continuing to improve safety and comfort in air travel.
The U.S. government is investing $25 billion to renovate airport terminals; upgrade air traffic control facilities and improve runways, taxiways and other vital infrastructure to make flying easier and safer.
“We can lead the world in the technologies of tomorrow, change the course of human health and disease, tackle the climate crisis and continue shaping a fairer, more equitable planet,” Biden said. With shared purpose, unyielding faith in our future and a drive to make the impossible possible, there is nothing beyond our capacity. I have never been more optimistic about our Nation’s future – especially in our skies and in space.”