Name at birth: Charles Augustus LindberghCharles Lindbergh made the first-ever solo airplane flight across the Atlantic Ocean. He left Roosevelt Field in New York on 20 May 1927, piloting a plane named The Spirit of St. Louis. 33 1/2 hours later he landed in Paris to a hero's welcome and global fame that stayed with him the rest of his life. Lindbergh was also part of a famous criminal case: at the height of his international celebrity, Lindbergh's infant son was kidnapped in 1932 and later found dead. The case and subsequent trial was a public sensation. In the late 1930s, Lindbergh became enamored with Adolf Hitler's transformation of Germany, and was a vocal opponent of American entry into World War II. His reputation as an anti-Semite and white supremacist was such that President Roosevelt didn't want him once the U.S. entered the war. Nonetheless, Lindbergh managed to fly combat missions for the U.S. and had a distinguished war career. Charles Lindbergh's 1953 autobiography The Spirit of St. Louis won the Pulitzer Prize.
Charles Lindbergh was followed by Amelia Earhart, the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean? DNA tests taken in 2003 confirmed that Charles Lindbergh was the father of three German siblings: David and Dyrk Hesshaimer and Astrid Bouteuil. The three, who requested the tests, said that Lindbergh had carried out an affair with their mother, Brigitte Hesshaimer, from 1957 until his death in 1974. It was later revealed that Lindbergh had four other children in Europe: Two by Hesshaimer?s sister Marietta, and another two by his personal secretary, known only by the name of Veleska? In one of the early ?Trial of the Century? cases, the Lindbergh baby kidnapping and murder captivated the public interest and sold newspapers. A German immigrant named Bruno Hauptmann was convicted of the crime and executed, though in the years since some have claimed he was wrongly accused.
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