Sun, Jul 01, 2012
Plans To Solo On Monday, His 16th Birthday
If everything goes according to plan, Robert Wilson Pinksten will become the youngest pilot to fly solo in a helicopter in the U.S., and he owes the milestone in part to the generosity of strangers.
Pinksten, of Nashua, NH, will turn 16 on Monday, and he has plans to make his first solo flight the same day.
So how does a 16-year-old afford helicopter instruction? It started with some seed money from his grandmother, but to reach his goal, he set up a website, and was amazed when friends, family, acquaintances, and even a bunch of supportive strangers started filling up the till.
MSNBC reports that Pinksten, who will be a Junior at Nashua High School North next year, said "I didn't think people cared. I certainly wanted to thank them."
Pinksten has been taking instruction in a Robinson R22. He will start chipping away at his required 10 solo hours on Monday, weather permitting. But even if the gets them in the next year, which sounds pretty likely, he'll have to wait until July 2nd 2013 to actually receive his PPL.
We'd be willing to bet that he'll do just that, on that day.
(Robinson R22 file photo)
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