The Fastest Man Around By: Mike Mezz (A narrative poem)
In a small town in West Virginia called Hamlin Charles Yeager was born to fly He joined the Air Force as he planned He dreamt of pushing the limits of the sky
Soon enough his wish would come true He earned his wings in 1943 And climbed in a fighter during World War Two Soaring over Europe shooting down Nazis
Hitler's pilots finally got their chance And shot Yeager's plane full of holes His parachute landed him in France French Resistance helped him evade German patrols
He flew over 60 combat missions And shot down more than a dozen planes They made sure he had plenty of ammunition Twice he shot down four Nazis in one day
Chuck Yeager is the fastest man around After the war he wanted to go faster than sound It wasn't long until command sent the word down For Chuck to again leave the ground
He painted Glamorous Glennis on the nose of his plane Yeager strapped on his helmet and climbed inside Sitting in the cockpit he quietly wondered if he'd die today He used a broomstick to close the hatch for the ride
Chuck broke two ribs a few days before During a "disagreement" with a horse His team gave him a carrot as a joke He chuckled while plotting his course
He fired the engines, bad thoughts left his mind The force slammed him back into the seat Glamorous Glennis shot through the desert sky The bullet plane raced passed 30,000 feet
The rudder started losing grip but remained stable At 35,000 feet he shut down two of the four chambers Any mistakes at this speed would prove fatal The clouds looked like streaks and misty vapors
Shimmying and shaking on the verge of losing control The Machmeter showed a blazing 0.95 All of a sudden the meter dropped to zero Is this plane dropping out of the sky?
The Machmeter came back to life as something exploded Glamorous Glennis blew past 662 miles per hour Then everything went completely silent He had done the impossible and hauling ass now
Chuck Yeager was the fastest man around The only person on earth to fly faster than sound History made by a man from a small West Virginia town His flight made everyone from Hamlin proud
Chuck Yeager will always be the fastest man around
"Hamiln, West Virginia never had a pigeon until they erected a statue of me in front of the high school" ~Chuck Yeager "The first time I ever saw a jet, I shot it down" ~Chuck Yeager
In 1968, Yeager was promoted to brigadier general. He is one of a very few who have risen from enlisted man to general in the Air Force. He was awarded the Congressional Silver Medal by President Ford. President Reagan honored him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
General Yeager’s other decorations include the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star with V device, the Air Force Commendation medal, the Silver Star with oak leaf cluster, the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, the Distinguished Service Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross with two clusters, and the Air Medal with ten clusters.
His civilian awards include the Harmon International Trophy (1954) and the Collier and Mackay Trophies (1948). He was the first and the youngest military pilot to be inducted into the Aviation Hall of Fame (1973). He flew combat missions in WW2, the Korean and Vietnam Wars.
Charles Elwood (Chuck) Yeager turned 97 years old on February 13, 2020. He lives in Penn Valley, California.
Copyright © 2020 Mike Mezz (All rights reserved)