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Emmanouil Argyropoulos

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Cause of death  Plane crash
Name  Emmanouil Argyropoulos
Rank  First Lieutenant

Battles  First Balkan War
Nationality  Greek
Role  Aviator
Emmanouil Argyropoulos
Known for  First Greek aviator, first casualty of Greek Military Aviation
Air force  Greek Military Aviation Service
Died  April 4, 1913, Langadas, Greece

Emmanouil Argyropoulos (Greek: Εμμανουήλ Αργυρόπουλος; 1889–1913) was a Greek pioneer aviator of the early 20th century. Apart from being the first Greek aviator who performed a flight over his homeland, he also became the first casualty of Greek military aviation.


First flight in Greece

Argyropoulos, originally a civil engineer, abandoned his profession and went to Paris in order to study aeronautics. At the end of January 1912, he acquired his pilot license and returned to Greece together with a privately owned Nieuport IV.G 50-hp aircraft. On February 8, 1912, Argyropoulos became the first Greek aviator to perform a flight in Greece, an event that was widely commented upon in the local press. After taking off from the Rouf district of Athens, he performed a 16-minute-long flight around the city, including an overflight of the Acropolis. An hour later he carried out a second flight, this time with Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos as his passenger. Venizelos, was enthusiastic about the concept of aerial warfare, and stated that Greece should immediately take advantage of this newly invented weapon.

Balkan Wars and death

When the Balkan Wars broke out in October 1912, he joined the military aviation with the rank of Lieutenant. On 4 April 1913, during a reconnaissance mission, his aircraft, a captured Ottoman Blériot XI, fell from a height of 600 m. while flying over the Langadas region near Thessaloniki. Both Argyropoulos and his passenger, the athlete and poet Konstantinos Manos, were killed. Argyropoulos thus became the first loss of Greek military aviation, and marked the end of air activities in the Balkan Wars.


Emmanouil Argyropoulos Wikipedia

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