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5 Fun Facts About June 17 In Iowa History

---Learn Every Day: IA Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ia To: 618-270-4005---

1. The first official flight of an airplane in Iowa occurred on June 17, 1911, when aviator Arthur Welsh flew a biplane over Des Moines.

2. On June 17, 1882, the first African American woman to earn a medical degree, Dr. Rebecca J. Cole, gave a lecture at the State University of Iowa on the importance of hygiene and health.

3. In 2013, the town of Parkersburg, Iowa, celebrated the fifth anniversary of its recovery from an F5 tornado that hit on June 17, 2008. The resilient community came together to rebuild and create a new town center.

4. On June 17, 1918, Iowa National Guardsman Merle Hay became the first American soldier killed in action during World War I. Hay was from Glidden, Iowa, and was just 21 years old when he died in a battle near the French-German border.

5. The Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines hosted the world's largest truck convoy on June 17, 2017, to raise money for the Special Olympics. More than 1,000 semis participated, and the event raised over $200,000 for the cause.
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