Monday, January 01, 2007

Son Pilots Jet

My oldest son, John, recently had a thrilling experience. He got to fly in the co-pilot's seat on a jet aircraft, a Cessna Citation CJ3.

The flight was a reward for special work he had done at his college, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona.

John flew in the co-pilot's seat, the front right seat. In the pilot seat (left front seat) was Phil Boyer, the president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA).

John got to pilot the jet aircraft enroute from the Prescott airport to the Winslow, Arizona, airport. Then John got to land the jet airplane himself at Winslow.

John is now in his fourth year of college at Embry-Riddle in the professional pilot program. Next May he will graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Science.

I also have a private pilot's license and I thoroughly enjoy flying airplanes. I don't fly very often because it is quite expensive. Fortunately, John has had wonderful opportunities in aviation. He attended a high school with an aviation focus and got his private pilot license (paid for by the school system) a few weeks before he got his high school diploma. He also got to attend two summer camps at Embry-Riddle before applying for admission.

I also belong to an organization named the National Association of Priest Pilots (NAPP). We have priest members who do all kinds of things in aviation. There are priests in Africa flying planes to support medical missions, priests in New Mexico who fly medical supplies into Mexico, priests who are certified flight instuctors (and train some of those medical missionaries), we even have priests who are commercial airline transport pilots, and priests in Alaska who weekly fly to small towns for church services.

Here is the priest pilots web site:

Here is a picture of the priest pilots annual meeting at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association headquarters building in 2005 (can you find me?):
Flying Padres visit AOPA

I am really proud of my son John (and somewhat jealous!).