Getting Started Young -- On A Stack Of Cushions
Some people wait until the time is just right before taking flying lessons. For Michael Barry, of St. Augustine, Fla., it was just after he turned 11. The fifth grader needs about a half dozen cushions to help him see over the panel and reach the pedals of the Florida Aviation Career Training Cessna 152 but his stature hasn't kept him from taking off and practicing basic flight and navigation skills. He's not quite landing on his own yet but instructor Donna Tostevin told the St. Augustine record Barry could join a special club of pilots at the airport. She said at least three local kids have earned their driver's licenses and soloed on the same day. Michael's dad Ron said flying is all his son wants to do now and he aims to be a commercial pilot. Teaching (very) young people to fly may be more popular than you imagine. AVweb was recently contacted by Cleo Chamberlain, an instructor who has developed a flight training program for young people.