A fundraising campaign has launched to create an Able Flight scholarship to honor Tyrell Rhodes, an Able Flight pilot who passed away from cancer Sept. 4.
The Tyrell Rhodes Memorial Scholarship will honor the young aviator, who earned his wings in 2012 thanks to an Able Flight scholarship. The non-profit Able Flight gives scholarships to disabled people to pay for their flight training.
Able Flight’s founder Charles Stites tells Tyrell’s story:
“Tyrell Rhodes didn’t complain about having Cerebral Palsy. In fact, he was known never to complain about anything. Like the choice he made to have major surgery on both knees and ankles at the same time to straighten and lengthen his legs so he could reach and operate the rudder pedals on an airplane. That surgery was followed by months of difficult and painful rehabilitation. But he didn’t complain.
“With our help, he became an Able Flight pilot in 2012 and he was truly living his dream. Then a few months later, he was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer that had already spread to other locations.
For most, and especially for a non-smoker, it would have provided reason to ask “why me?”, but not Ty. Instead, he faced two years of chemo, surgery, clinical trials and radiation with his typical dignity, grace and optimism. To the end, he planned to beat cancer.
On Sept. 4, just after midnight and with his family at his side, Ty passed away.
With your help we’ll honor Ty by awarding a scholarship in his name. We have created a campaign to fund the scholarship, and your donation can make it happen.
Please donate any amount today, and just as important, please share his story with your friends on social media.”