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For release: Oct. 2, 1996

Michael Finneran
(757) 864-6121

RELEASE NO. 96-166


The pioneers of flight - the men and women who worked for NASA's forerunner - are planning a reunion that will gather some of the legendary figures of aeronautics in Hampton.

The reunion will celebrate NASA's predecessor agency, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), from Oct. 3 through 6. The City of Hampton has issued a proclamation declaring the dates "NACA Reunion VII Days."

The NACA was formed in 1915 (to supervise and direct the scientific study of the problems of flight, with a view to their practical solutions) all on a first-year budget of $5,000.

NASA Langley Research Center (then known as Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory) was opened two years later as the nation's first civilian aeronautical laboratory. The NACA became NASA with an act of Congress in 1958

Reunion organizers said more than 650 former NACA employees have registered to attend. A welcoming reception will be held Friday, Oct. 4, at the Virginia Air and Space Center in downtown Hampton.

The reunion will be headquartered at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Conference Center on Mercury Boulevard in Hampton, where a banquet and dance will be held Saturday night featuring keynote speaker Dr. Hans Mark, former NASA deputy administrator.

Planned activities include tours of Jamestown, Yorktown, Williamsburg and NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton. The NACA/NASA Langley Alumni Association is hosting the reunion. The association president, Duncan McIver of Williamsburg, can be reached at (757) 595-1306. The reunion chairman is Cornelius Driver of Hampton.

The reunion has a home page on the Internet at NACA Reunion.

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