Being a retired flight instructor, I really enjoyed the article “Why can’t you find a CFI?” in the July 20 issue.  The comments of all the people who contributed to that article brought back a lot of memories and this is one of them: We rolled to a stop and I got out of the back seat, closed the door, and opened the canopy.  I told him to take a 2,000-foot tow and just fly around and enjoy himself and then make a good pattern and landing. His mom stood by my side as he took off and we watched as he made lazy circles in the sky.  The phone rang and I had to go inside, but she stayed right there and never took her eyes off him. I made sure I was back outside to see his pattern and landing — both were perfect.

We walked down to the glider and he just sat there beaming. His mom was beaming too and I think maybe her smile was just a little bit bigger than his. We both congratulated him and then his mom took some pictures of the two of us standing by the glider.

When they left, she got in behind the wheel and he slid in on the passenger side. Then it dawned on me: I had just taught this kid to fly but it would be a few years before he was old enough to get a driver’s license!

It was very rewarding. No amount of money could buy me that feeling.


Hinckley SoaringHinckley, Ill.  

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