The aviation gene is particularly strong in some families. The Boyd family from Washington state is a prime example. On Dec. 16, 2010, Jason Boyd, 19, passed his private pilot check ride. He’s the second member of his family to earn his wings through the professional pilot program at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, Wash., south of Seattle, and the third Boyd to be enrolled at Clover Park.
Dean Boyd, Jason’s grandfather, has been flying since he was a teenager. After retiring from the Air Force he entered the maintenance program at Clover Park and earned his A&P certificate. He went on to teach at the college and maintain the school’s fleet of aircraft for about 10 years.
His son John, Jason’s father, earned both his A&P and professional pilot tickets from Clover Park. Today he is a captain with Alaska Airlines.
Jason’s grandfather and father were on hand when Jason received his ticket. The older Boyd men noted that it was a bit like homecoming as they caught up with former students-turned-instructors and saw the airplanes that they had flown and maintained way back when.
Clover Park’s vocational programs began in 1942 training civilians for technical jobs needed by the military. After the war the school expanded its offerings to include aircraft mechanic and pilot training.
In 1954 the aviation program evolved into a college-level program, operating out of a hangar on an old Navy supply depot in Lakewood. In 2002 the aviation programs relocated to Pierce County Airport/Thun Field (PLU) some 12 miles east of McChord AFB. The building that houses the program today was specially designed for the the needs of CPTC.
For more information: CPTC.edu