The day of the first nonstop flight across the Atlantic – level 3


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

Then 25-year-old Charles Lindbergh came on the scene. His job was to fly a mail plane. He was an aviation enthusiast and wasn’t afraid to take risks. He had to borrow $15,000 at the bank to build a plane that could take on the challenge.

He wanted to build the lightest possible plane and he decided to fly alone. His plane had only one engine and he got rid of everything he didn’t need. He even got rid of his parachute and radio. He wanted to navigate only by looking at the sky.

On May 20, 1927, he started his journey across the Atlantic. He encountered several problems on the way. He flew in fog for many hours. He had to rise above storm clouds to avoid a storm. After 24 hours of flying, he got very tired and even fell asleep several times.

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

Difficult words: mail (letters and packages that people send by post), aviation (related to planes and their flying), get rid of (to throw away), encounter (to experience), cheer (to shout happily).

What powerful lesson do you think Charles Lindbergh's story teaches us?


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