The 18-Year-Old Pilot Who Will Inspire You to Follow Your Passion
My mom is a crazy aviation buff, so she always took me to air shows when I was younger. We’d watch the Thunderbirds or Blue Angels, and I’d get the pilots’ autographs. With her encouragement, I started taking lessons after I turned 12. Friends would ask me to hang out, and I’d say, “Sorry, I have a flight”—they’d look at me as if I had four heads. But the air felt like where I was supposed to be.
Flying is amazing for many reasons: the beauty you can see only from above, visiting incredible places. But to me, one of the coolest things is being in charge of the plane—the liberation of holding the controls. I plan to fly the big jets as an airline transport pilot, which means doing lots of ground training, banking 1,500 hours of flight time, and earning a bunch of certificates and ratings.
On my first plane ride, when I was 4, the flight attendants gave me a little pin with wings. We took a picture of me in the cockpit next to the captain. Who would’ve guessed that someday I’d be sitting in his seat?