Saturday, August 31, 2019

The Pilot Community

After driving Mike B back to the Salisbury Airport, I had some time to think on the return drive home. In itself that should be scary, but, it triggered some thoughts on how lucky I am to have such great friends. Here are just a few thoughts that came to mind. 

Much like back in my Corvette days the hobby (we pilots like to call it our passion) promoted a togetherness of sorts.  Club meetings, car shows, and travel to distant overnight shows really fostered the camaraderie between members. I know the RV community is the same way, despite miles apart the core keeps in contact and there is always a network available for help.  This like minded thought process I assume would apply to sailing, cruisers in particular and maybe the weekend warriors too.  

Now for the pilots.  I have never been around a group of people so willing to help, or share information like aviators do. I'm talking about the basic text or email conversations about safety, airports, avionics, purchase tips and even selling tips. 

A chance to fly trumps all, we all crave the mission. Sometimes, like this week, the mission was help with my training. My friend and fellow pilot Mike B jumped on a plane, flew commercial to get here just to fly right seat and help me become familiar with the autopilot and GPS. To reach a step further the previous owner, Bill, sent me an email after reading my blog posts and offered invaluable information on the avionics speak for the particular units I have. 

Some of the type clubs are the same, shared experiences and support without strings attached. The Beech Aero Club should be the poster club for all others. Having only been a Commander Owner Group member for eight months I have found that they are cut from the same cloth. The people I have met went out of their way to be helpful, I can only pay such kindness forward. 

Mary and I are indeed blessed. From the support we received from fellow BAC member and pilot Mark G and his bride Candy and all the other pilots who texted, emailed, called and visited...just an amazing outpouring. 

In order to just get back in the cockpit I had friends supporting me, none more than Charles G.  To say he was relentless would be an understatement. His intent wasn't to just get me to climb back in a plane, he really helped me keep my head on straight and still believe in myself with regard to flight. 

The strangest part about pilots is that I  feel I could overnight in just about any state on a moments notice. I know Mary and I would do the same for any pilot we know. It's more than camaraderie, it's a brotherhood of men and women who do indeed share this passion.  

I'm proud to be one of the brotherhood.

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