I got my pilot license today!

I am now a licensed pilot.

It’s been 30 years in the making, but I finally got licensed to fly a plane! I’ve wanted to ever since seeing Top Gun all those years ago, and after the Navy told me I couldn’t fly jets because of my eyesight, it kind of fell by the wayside. Late last summer, I contacted an old friend at a flight club at DuPage Airport about getting some lessons, and it has been a long uphill road ever since.

I logged about 75 hours in the plane before taking the exam, which is not terribly abnormal. I had almost three months off due to weather, so there was some relearning that needed to occur. But I can finally enjoy being done and having the license, and moving on to some bluer skies.

After talking to Ryan (my instructor) and some other instructors and pilots, I decided to fly with Chris Anderson of Progressive Air in Janesville. The experience was well worth the cross country flight up there. Chris was really pleasant, pragmatic, and forgiving - he’s very patient and explains what he wants really well, and focuses on the things that are important rather than just checking off boxes on a form. He also publishes a blog that covers mistakes and things that come up in other check rides, and that was a great study resource prior to my own check ride.

My family surprised me with a cake, card and balloon, a toy plane, and a 6-pack of Revolution when I came back from my exam. They’re the best :)

I am thankful to the Fox Flying Club for providing me with the aircraft and means to fly, and to Ryan Feeney for being such an awesome, capable, and patient instructor.

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