Celebrate Wilbur Wright’s 153rd birthday, online

Orville and Wilbur Wright replicas at the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills. [NPS photo]

Join the First Flight Society to celebrate Wilbur Wright’s birthday 153rd birthday online.

Lifetime member Alfred Poor will be interviewing Wilbur live on Facebook and YouTube on April 16 at 2 p.m. Eastern.

Wilbur will be portrayed by First Flight Society Board Member Paul Carr.

Capt. Paul Carr appears as The Spirit of Wilbur Wright and offers a personal story of his life growing up in Dayton, Ohio, the positive influences of his parents, and how the close relationship with his brother Orville combined to forge the path that led to their historical achievements.

Beginning with childhood sledding, printing presses, bicycles and kites, audiences will hear and see how the brothers overcame personal tragedy, applied common sense to scientific research, and persevered through failure, danger, and disappointment to solve man’s age-old dream to fly.

Along the way you will hear about North Carolinians who shared in the Brother’s successes as well as their failures. Wilbur will explain how geography, weather, and the isolation of the Outer Banks made it an ideal location for the December 17, 1903 Miracle at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

Paul Carr is an international airline Captain for Delta Airlines and a retired Air Force Colonel. He has over 40 years of aviation experience, having flown numerous aircraft including the B767/757, B737, MD88, L1011, KC-10, KC-135, T-37, and T-38. As Chief, Air Reserve Component, Air Force Future Concepts and Transformation Division he led a Pentagon group in exploring where military aviation is headed in the coming decades. He has had a life-long curiosity about the Wright Brothers and has been appearing as a Wilbur Wright storyteller since 2002. Captain Carr also has a passion for baseball and kids and spends much of his spare-time building and developing the Miracle League of the Triangle, a baseball league for children with special needs.

Without the First Flight Society there wouldn’t be a Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. The Kill Devil Hills Memorial Association, later named First Flight Society, began as a group of local businessmen who successfully petitioned the US Congress to fund and build a monument to the Wright Brothers’ 1903 achievement.

The FFS plans an annual celebration at the Wright Brothers National Memorial on Dec. 17 mandated by their bylaws to memorialize the work of the Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk, NC.

They created the Paul E Garber Shrine in 1966 to honor individuals and groups for achieving significant “firsts” in aviation development since 1903. (Charles Lindbergh, Tuskegee Airmen, Mary Feik, John Glenn, Katherine Johnson (Hidden Figures) and most recently Colonel Gail “the Candy Bomber” Halvorsen among others.

First Flight Society promotes aviation education through an Aviation Education Committee to expand the knowledge of the Wright Brothers’ legacy by bringing aviation education programs to students in Dare County. They also offer an annual FFS Scholarship through Outer Banks Community Foundation for students pursuing aviation education in North Carolina.

More information about the First Flight Society can be found at https://firstflight.org