Just her and the Sky

Senior on track to become life-flight pilot

Just her and the Sky

Ashton Adams, Staff Writer

  It is not unusual for a student in high school to earn a license to operate a mode of transportation  – but it is usually not one that leaves the ground.

  Senior Madison Lane has been around planes her whole life, but she started flying planes the summer of 2015 in June. She decided to start flying because she has been around planes her whole life. Her dad owns his own Cessna 150, and she plans on flying for a living.

  “My future goals include getting everything I need to become a life flight pilot.” senior Lane said.

  Becoming a pilot takes a lot of time, work, and effort. Before becoming a pilot, there are a lot of requirements. For example, a pilot must be at least 16 years old, be able to read, speak, write, and understand English, and he/she must hold at least a third-class medical certificate. He/she also needs 30 hours of flying with an instructor and 10 hours solo.

Lane has overcome all the requirements and has received her pilot’s license.

  “It is way harder than anything I have ever done,” Lane said.

  Lane flies out of Clinton, and learned how to fly from her mentor/teacher Dennis Walrath.

  “He is the best because he doesn’t baby me. He is super funny and laid back, but yet does an amazing job teaching me how to fly.” Lane said.

  Lane does not have her own plane, so when she flies, she flies with her instructor’s Cessna 172.

  One of Lane’s favorite parts about flying is when she takes off, things get small and it’s just her and the sky. In her opinion, though, the worst part about flying is when it is windy and the plane gets pushed around in the sky.

  “They always say every takeoff is optional, but every landing is mandatory. I have a big fear of something happening to my engine and having to do an emergency landing,” Lane said.

  Lane’s friends are very supportive of her flying.

 “Madison and I have been best friends for 13 years and for as long as I can remember she’s always wanted to fly a plane. I wasn’t very shocked when I found out she was taking flying lessons, it was when she called me and told me she flew a plane all by herself and I couldn’t believe it,” senior Bridget Clarke said. “I can’t believe she is following her dream, and I can tell it’s what she loves to do.”

   “I think it’s awesome that Madison is flying a plane and I am so proud of her! Madison has always wanted to fly planes and I know that she will fulfill her dream,” senior Kylie McRoberts said.