Does the distress call "mayday" have anything to do with the May Day holiday?

Maybe the original person in distress needed the help of a May pole to save him? Just spitballing here.

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Ethel Hauck
April 22, 2020 3:23PM

Your theory, though intriguing, is very incorrect, I am sorry to say. The two terms don't have anything to do with each other. "Mayday" was coined in 1923 by Frederick Mockford, an airport radio officer in London. It sounds like a French term for "come and help me," which is why he went with it. May Day the holiday, however, has roots in ancient Celtic and Roman festivals welcoming the arrival of spring.


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