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The Man Who Shrunk the World

08-Dec-20 10:22 am EST Leave a comment

At 97, Chuck Yeager has lived a very full life. But it was distinguished for many other reasons too. Not the least of which being he was one of the architects of what was once called ‘The Global Community’. This is a smaller world where communications and mobility of mankind began to have powers that the ancient gods of the past could have only dared dream of.

Yeager’s contribution was willing to be a test pilot for the United States Air Force and, insodoing, became the first man to break the speed of sound itself. It was only the first of many achievements to come, of course – but at the time it really seemed to kick things off in a way nobody in the world could approach. In the later years of his life, Yeager would have seen super-sonic speed as commonplace (even with passenger craft like the Concord taking flight). But he’ll surely be most often remembered for being the first to show how it could be done.

Of course, today, such high-profile achievements tend to either not happen at all or be so sophisticated in enhancing our capabilities as a species we daren’t even speak of them openly (for whatever that might mean). This might lead one to think Yeager was one-of-a-kind in other ways too: that he was among the last to bring the US well-deserved glory; but while totally untrue in fact – it doesn’t diminish Yeager or his life. For those who play Elite, some of the older of us may recall he even became involved with software gaming for a time in the late 1980s – for many Chuck Yeager’s Flight Simulator was a real hit!

Chuck Yeager, remembered today as a pioneer and explorer. Truly more worthy than any of us of the title ‘Elite’!

Gen. Chuck Yeager became a legend for being the first person to experience speed beyond sound itself. (Credit: Winnipeg Free Press, December 8, 2020)
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