Cerebral Palsy-Challenged Pilot Adele Schneidereit
Adele Schneidereit Wednesday carried her abilities over the hurdle of cerebral palsy (a birth defect that causes paralysis of one or more limbs) to earn her private pilot's certificate -- bringing her one step closer to a goal of piloting an aircraft around the world. And making a movie about it (watch the trailer, here). Aside from the physical challenges of flight, it took her 11 months to satisfy the FAA medical/SODA process. She also changed flight schools mid-stream, forcing her to re-fly her fundamentals with a new instructor who could then be confident signing her logbook endorsements. Schneidereit flies without the aid of cockpit modifications, but says she does "do certain things differently" and has become a master of trim -- using trim "as a tool and not merely a labor-saving device." Those skills should serve her well as she advances to her instrument rating and begins to train for her round-the-world jaunt with shorter trips to Mexico and Canada.
Schneidereit is co-founder and CEO of the Inspire the World Foundation, raising awareness and money for research to find a cure for cerebral palsy.