Though Orville Wright and Mahatma Gandhi had almost nothing in common, both had a lasting influence over the world. Orville, along with brother Wilbur, is credited with essentially creating modern aviation. Gandhi, on the other hand, inspired civil rights around the world through his peaceful acts of civil disobedience. Both had rich, memorable lives that came to an end on January 30, 1948.
While many people had attempted flight before the Wright brothers, their historic 1903 flight was the first instance of a controlled, sustained flight in a powered, heavier-than-air vehicle, as the Smithsonian points out. It was a heck of a leap forward for mankind in the technological sense. It also paved the way for single-serving pretzels and tiny bottles of booze on flights, neither of which Wright saw before he passed of a heart attack at age 76.
As a devout Hindu and man of simple means, Gandhi was known for his passive resistance approach to political dissent. Gandhi was fighting for India’s independence from Britain and against the oppression of its people. He also sought peace between Muslims and Hindus and was assassinated at the age of 78, according to History.