Congratulations and thank you to Chapter 939 President Rich Largent, EAA 512497, who recently flew his 1,300th Young Eagle, 20 years after he began flying for the program in 1997.
Rich said early on in his participation with Young Eagles he wasn’t sure if he could continue, after flying a young man who at first was testing Rich’s patience. However, being in the air for a while and calming down, the young boy turned and said, “Mister, this has been the best day of my life.” Rich, whose wife is now Chapter 939’s Young Eagles coordinator, said it is those moments that keep him flying.
“Kids today seem to have so many opportunities and for many the fascination of flight doesn’t hold the luster it did for my generation, that is until the wheels leave the ground,” he said. “Then the magic begins.”
Beyond giving free flights to youth, Rich said he chooses to donate his time to Young Eagles because the program helps reach the non-flying public and can teach them about general aviation’s place in the fabric of communities.
“It would be my fervent hope that the program will continue to garner the support of the aviation world and that EAA will continue to lead the way in recognizing the importance of bringing the spirit of aviation to not only the next generation of pilots but to use this platform to build bridges with communities,” he said.