air·​man | \ ˈer-mən \
plural airmen

Definition of airman

1 : a civilian or military pilot, aviator, or aviation technician
2 : an enlisted person in the air force: such as
a : an enlisted person of one of the four ranks below sergeant
b : an enlisted person ranking above an airman basic and below an airman first class

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Synonyms for airman


aviator, birdman, flier (also flyer), pilot

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Examples of airman in a Sentence

her father was an airman who was shot down in Vietnam

Recent Examples on the Web

In a crisis, a DABS set would be put aboard C-17 Globemaster III transports, hauled to a friendly military or even civilian airfield, and unpacked by airmen to create an instant airbase. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force Is Having Trouble With Its 'Base in a Box'," 2 Jan. 2019 In Vietnam, Soviet surface-to-air missile commanders and operators oversaw and operated radar sites and missile batteries resulting in the destruction of dozens of American aircraft and numerous killed, wounded and captured airmen. WSJ, "Russia and U.S. Crossed Swords Many Times," 16 Nov. 2018 Some friends had another name for the strapping, 6-foot airman. Michael E. Miller, Washington Post, "Ellicott City ‘hero’ urged friends to honor Memorial Day — then died trying to save a stranger," 29 May 2018 Throughout the Cold War, Soviet fighters attacked numerous American intelligence-gathering aircraft flying on the periphery of the Soviet Union, killing or wounding dozens of American airmen and intelligence personnel. WSJ, "Russia and U.S. Crossed Swords Many Times," 16 Nov. 2018 Under general orders two months later, the site was renamed Camp Kelly, after the airman killed in 1911. From Express-news Archives, San Antonio Express-News, "A simple aviation camp helped S.A. land the role of 'Military City'," 11 Mar. 2018 On Wednesday the Pentagon identified the dead as two soldiers and one airman. Ehsanullah Amiri, WSJ, "Attack at Security Company in Afghanistan Kills 10, Injures 19," 28 Nov. 2018 Ray-Ban began as a collaboration between Bausch & Lomb and an American airman. Bloomberg, Fortune, "These $500 Ray-Ban Aviators Are Plated in 24K Gold," 16 June 2018 To no avail—Dutch men and women continued to assist the Allied airmen, whatever the risk. Megan Koreman, WSJ, "Five Best: Megan Koreman on the Cost of Courage Under Nazism," 25 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'airman.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of airman

1873, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for airman

Last Updated

21 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for airman

The first known use of airman was in 1873

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English Language Learners Definition of airman

: a member of the air force with a rank below that of sergeant


air·​man | \ ˈer-mən \
plural airmen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of airman

1 : an enlisted person in the air force in one of the ranks below sergeant

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Comments on airman

What made you want to look up airman? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to settle judicially or to act as judge

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