Before he passed, my father had worked
with the Department of Homeland Security
in a public affairs position that he enjoyed
immensely. Photo courtesy of the U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
and feel at home in his presence, even
if it was in the middle of a store or at
work. I’m reminded of this as I think
of the flying fields at which I’ve been a
In the past, I belonged to a club that
had monthly airplane contests, filled
with plenty of jokes about particular
people’s flying techniques, right down
to their personal habits such as exiting a
conversation by walking away backward.
Currently, I enjoy the jokes about our
field’s self-designated mower and get a
kick out of the pilot (you know who you
are) who says he never gets a chance to
fly because everyone keeps talking to
What My Dad Taught Me
In the end, we fly because it’s
interesting and fun, right? It’s important
not to lose sight of this. Always
remember why you fly in the first place.
Whether we’re all about a 12-foot
wingspan World War II model or rubber
band-powered flight, we take to the
skies, putting our skills to the test. We
often deal with some curveballs along
the way. So it is with life.
Although my dad and I never
flew together, he gave me wings. He
showed me that it’s good to pursue
and stick with a hobby or passion.
He showed me that conversation
with others is fun and essential. “All
humans put on their pants the same
way,” as he liked to say, and therefore,
should be seen as people to approach,
not avoid. Most of all, he loved a good
laugh, even during stressful times.
My last time with him earlier this year
showed me the most powerful father/
daughter lesson of all, and it’s one that
parallels my love of flying. You see, it was
in his last moments that he reminded
me of the importance of enjoying every
aspect of life’s flights—literally and
After all, much of the beauty happens
when our craft departs the earth,
soaring to the skies with wings proudly
outstretched into the unknown that is
97 Model Aviation JUNE 2015 www.ModelAviation.com