, Charlotte

, North Carolina

, United States

Posted on
2020-02-16 21:54:25
“I began building and flying balsa wood model aircraft when when I was 10 years old. My father and I spent a lot of time working on model aircraft, and it inspired me to seek a career in aviation. I became a professional pilot when I was 21. That was 41 years ago. I am an airline captain for one of the largest airlines in the world. I am a type rated in E-190, A-320, A-330, and A-350. I fly mostly North Atlantic routes to Europe these days, but my love for aviation does not stop when I finish a trip. I build and fly model aircraft in my free time; sharing my love for aviation with my grandchildren and neighborhood children. From FPV multi-rotors to park flyers, to DIY foam board radio controller fixed wing, to foam board gliders – I have been privileged to introduce the love of flight to many young people. As I look back on my career as a pilot, I can honestly say that it all began when I was 10, in a church group, where I learned to love model airplanes from a humble man who taught young boys and girls about aviation. Model aircraft provide community, family, innovation, and inspiration. I cannot image the damage ultimately that will be done to aviation in America by the short-sightedness of the December 2019 NPRM. America is the home of aviation innovation because of the amateur’s love for aviation. The Wright Brothers were hobbyists. William Goddard was inspired as a boy by amateur flight projects. Neil Armstrong, as a boy, learned to love flying as a hobbyist. Wernher von Braun was introduced to rocketry as a young man in an amateur rocket club. Throughout our history, inspiration and innovation in aviation often began with children who just wanted to make something fly. The December 2019 NPRM would make it impossible for 10 year old to legally build his own model aircraft and fly it in his own backyard. It would make it illegal for a 15 year old to fly her multi-rotor that she designed, soldered, and programmed – all because she doesn’t have an a rural internet connection for RemoteID. Aviation is more than business for many of us who have even made it our profession – it was and will always be our love and our passion – from paper airplanes, to 600,000 pound passenger jets. We can hope and pray that the FAA will not kill that.”