The day of the first nonstop flight across the Atlantic – level 2


In 1919, a New York businessman announced a competition. He promised to pay $25,000 to the first person who could fly nonstop from New York to Paris. However, it was such a difficult thing that nobody tried it for the next five years. In 1924, the first people tried to do it, but all of them failed.

Then 25-year-old Charles Lindbergh came. His job was to fly a mail plane. He loved flying and he wasn’t afraid to take risks. He had to borrow $15,000 at the bank to build a plane that could fly such a long distance.

He wanted to build a very light plane and he decided to fly alone. His plane had only one engine and he threw away everything which he didn’t need. For example, he didn’t take his parachute or a radio. He wanted to use only the sky for navigation.

On May 20, 1927, he started his journey across the Atlantic. He had many problems on the way. He flew in fog for many hours. He had to fly above a storm. After 24 hours of flying, he was very tired and he started to sleep for short moments.

However, he managed to overcome all the difficulties. After 33.5 hours, he landed at an airport in Paris where 150,000 happy people were waiting for him.

Difficult words: announce (to say officially), fail (not to be successful), mail (letters and packages which people send by post), engine (a motor), navigation (what you do when you want to find the correct way), overcome (to be stronger than something which wanted to stop you).

What challenges did Lindbergh have to face during his flight across the Atlantic?


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