ON THIS DAY IN UNITED STATES HISTORY
February 5, 1958
The United States Air Force Loses a Nuclear Bomb
Off the Coast of Savannah, Georgia
On this day in 1958, a 7,600-pound Mark 15 nuclear bomb was being carried by a B-57 during a practice exercise
when the B-47 colided with an F-86 fighter plane. The pilot of the F-86 ejected before crashing, however the B-57
was able to remain airborne. The crew asked for (and was granted) permission to jettison the bomb into the ocean in
order to avoid a potentially more serious explosion during a crash landing. There are conflicting reports as to
whether the bomb was fully functional as a nuclear device at the time, however it did contain a large amount of
conventional high explosives and highly enriched uranium. Despite many attempts, it has never been recovered.
February 5, 1918
The United States Achieves its First Arial Victory
On this day in 1918, Stephen W. Thompson became the first person in U.S. military uniform to down an enemy
aircraft when he shot down a German fighter during World War I. He was not in a U.S. plane at the time at the time.
He had been invited to fly as a gunner with the French during a bombing run. After they had dropped their bombs,
they were attacked by German fighters where he Thompson was able to shoot one of them down.