Pilot Delivers State Flag To Wright Brothers Memorial
Lehner was one of 50 EAA-member pilots chosen—one from each state—to participate in the “50 Flags to Kitty Hawk” program, a year-long effort that is part of EAA’s “Countdown to Kitty Hawk” initiative, presented by Ford Motor Company, celebrating the achievements of the Wright brothers and the 100th anniversary of powered flight in 2003.
Lehner was the 11th EAA-member pilot to complete the journey to Kitty Hawk, where he also presented National Park Service officials with a signed proclamation from Governor Mitt Romney, declaring July 7th, 2003, as “50 Flags to Kitty Hawk Day” throughout the state. Following the presentation, the Massachusetts flag was raised at the Wright Brothers National Memorial site, where it flew for the entire day.
“My wife, Gina and I were excited and honored to be chosen to fly the Massachusetts state flag to Kitty Hawk,” Lehner said. “We can’t wait to bring some of my high school students back for the Centennial Celebration.”
A teacher at Blackstone Valley Tech High School, Lehner has more than 3300 hours in the air, and has been an EAA member since 1981. His flight of 450 miles took 5 hours to complete. Ray and Gina restored and piloted a blue and white, 1973 Cessna 172M to Kitty Hawk.
EAA’s “Countdown to Kitty Hawk” program, which is also supported by Microsoft Flight Simulator and Eclipse Aviation, includes construction of an exact flying reproduction of the 1903 Wright flyer, and a six-stop national tour of EAA’s “Countdown to Kitty Hawk” pavilion exhibit, which features the Flyer, historic artifacts and Wright brothers correspondence from the Library of Congress, and numerous interactive aviation displays.
The tour will culminate at Kill Devil Hills, N.C., when as part of the Centennial of Flight Celebration, EAA’s Wright Flyer will fly again at 10:35 a.m. on Dec. 17, 2003—precisely 100 years to the minute from when the Wrights made history.
For more information on EAA’s “Countdown to Kitty Hawk” program, visit www.countdowntokittyhawk.com.
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