Opfer müssen gebracht werden

(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: lawrence@krubner.com


Lilienthal was a German mining engineer who, starting with only a pair of birdlike wings, designed and flew a series of gliders—eighteen in all—and made more than two thousand flights in them to become the first true aviator. He held on to a connecting bar with his legs dangling free so they could be used in running or jumping and also in the air for balance. He took off by jumping from a building or escarpment or running down a man-made forty-five-foot hill, and he wrote ecstatically of the sensation of flying. Articles and photographs of him in the air were published widely. Icarus-like he fell fifty-five feet and was fatally injured, not when his wings fell off but when a gust of wind tilted him upward so that his glider stalled. Opfer müssen gebracht werden were his final words, “sacrifices must be made.”