William Rankin

Survivor of Fall Through A Thunderstorm Cloud
Born Oct 16, 1920

Lieutenant Colonel William Henry Rankin is the only known person to survive a fall from the top of a cumulonimbus thunderstorm cloud. He was a USMC pilot, and a World War II and Korean War veteran. He was flying an F-8 jet fighter over a cumulonimbus cloud when the engine stalled, forcing him to eject and parachute into the cloud. Colonel Rankin wrote a book about his experience, "The Man Who Rode the Thunder."… Read More

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of William Rankin.


1920 Birth Born in 1920.


1959 39 Years Old In the summer of 1959, Rankin was flying from Naval Air Station South Weymouth, Massachusetts to Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort in South Carolina. … Read More


2009 89 Years Old Died in 2009.
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