An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

100th Anniversary Logo with the 100 in large letters and the museum logo
Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week.
FREE Admission & Parking

Triumph and Tragedy: Maj. John "Jack" L. Armstrong

On Sept. 3, 1954, Maj. John "Jack" L. Armstrong, an Air Force test pilot at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, flew an F-86H to set a new speed record of 649.302 mph for the 500-km course. For this feat, Maj. Armstrong was awarded the General Electric Trophy, but sadly, he was unable to accept it. Two days later, while simulating the record flight to the crowd at the National Aircraft Show, Maj. Armstrong died when his F-86H suddenly broke up in mid-air.

Click here to return to the Cold War Gallery.

 

Find Out More
Line
Related Fact Sheets
North American F-86H Sabre
Line