January 27, 2009
Rickenbacker - Eddie Rickenbacker
Eddie Rickenbacker, born on October 8, 1890 in Columbus, Ohio, was an Ace Fighter Pilot in World War I. Rickenbacker was a professional race car driver, setting a speed world record in 1914. When America entered the war, Rickenbacker volunteered for flight training and was granted admittance as a result of his fame as a professional driver despite being over-age and not meeting the educational requirements. He was commissioned as a Lieutenant after only 17 days as a student pilot. Rickenbacker was excluded from the social groups of most pilots for his lack of education. Rickenbacker flew a total of 300 combat hours, more than any other American pilot, and is claimed to be responsible for at least 24 victories. Rickenbacker died on July 23 1973. Eddie Rickenbacker was made a Great Ohioan in 2009.