• The Syrian Expatriates Organization claims that a combination of Syrian government airstrikes and and a military blockade over the previous 130 days have destroyed 75 percent of the city of Deir ez-zor, Syria, killing over 3,000 people and causing 380,000 to flee the city. - 20th October 2012
  • Launch: Space Shuttle Columbia STS-73 at 9:53:00 am EDT. Mission highlights: Spacelab mission. - 20th October 1995
  • Sheila Scott, English aviatrix died (b. 1922). Scott broke over 100 aviation records through her long distance flight endeavours, which included a 34,000 mile (54,400 km) “world and a half” flight 1971 on which she became the first person to fly over the North Pole in a small aircraft. - 20th October 1988
  • USAF LTV A-7D-4-CV Corsair II, 69-6207, of the 4450th Tactical Group, Nellis AFB, Nevada, loses all power 15 miles S of Indianapolis, Indiana at 31,000 feet while en route from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Tinker AFB, Oklahoma. Pilot tries to dead-stick into Indianapolis International Airport but receives poor direction from air traffic controllers and crashes at ~0915 hrs. during late turn after aiming plane at a baseball field but fighter veers, striking bank branch roof and hitting center of Ramada Inn across the street, killing nine employees, injuring five others (one of whom died later as a result of the injuries sustained). Pilot Maj. Bruce L. Teagarden, 35, ejected, suffering bruises and muscle strain. He lands in parking lot of Ace Supply Company, four blocks from the hotel. Air Force pays out $50,427 in property claims damages, according to The New York Times on 26 October. This A-7D was part of the unit then secretly operating Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk stealth aircraft but this was successfully kept out of the media for several years. - 20th October 1987
  • The presidential aircraft of southeast African nation of Mozambique, a Tupolev Tu-134, crashes in South Africa, killing President Samora Machel and 33 other passengers. The aircraft (registered C9-CAA) crashes into hills after the pilots fail to follow proper instrument procedures for landing at Mbuzini. Though an investigation of the crash would show no indication of any sabotage or intentional grounding, many people such as Nelson Mandela claim that Machel was murdered. Ten people survived. - 20th October 1986
  • Japanese Air Self Defense Force McDonnell-Douglas F-15DJ Eagle, 12-8053, of the 202 Hiko-tai, crashes into the Pacific Ocean 110 miles E of Nyutubaru Air Base, Japan, during low altitude night flying training. - 20th October 1983
  • A Swiss Air Force Hawker Hunter is shot down by another Hunter during an exercise at Cherroux near Payne, Switzerland. - 20th October 1982
  • First dog fights of the Iran-Iraq War]. An Iraqi Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 is shot down by Iranian F-4 Phantoms - 20th October 1980
  • In the 1977 Convair CV-300 crash, the airliner chartered by the band Lynyrd Skynyrd runs out of fuel en route to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, crashing five miles (8 km) north of Gillsburg, Mississippi in a swampy pine forest while trying to reach an alternate airport; band members Ronnie Van Zant, Steve and Cassie Gaines, plus assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick and the two pilots of the plane, are killed in the accident. - 20th October 1977
  • Finnair introduces an inertial navigation system on its aircraft, becoming the first airline to dispense with the need for a navigator aboard. - 20th October 1969
  • First flight of the Bell UH-1 Iroquois - 20th October 1956
  • A TWA Lockheed Constellation makes the first non-stop, scheduled passenger flight across the United States - 20th October 1953
  • Northrop YF-89D Scorpion, 49-2463, crashes at Edwards AFB, California, killing Northrop test pilot Walter P. Jones and Northrop radar operator Jack Collingsworth. - 20th October 1953
  • US paratroops are used to cut off supplies from Pyongyang - 20th October 1950
  • First flight of the McDonnell XF-88 Voodoo - 20th October 1948