Earn­ing his wings

PI­LOT’S LIFE­TIME PAS­SION IS NOW HIS PRO­FES­SION

Joondalup Times - - FRONT PAGE - Jes­sica Nico

LEARN­ING to fly can be a stress­ful time for many young pi­lots, but hav­ing Aus­tralia’s best flight in­struc­tor in the next seat is likely to make things a lit­tle eas­ier.

Grade one in­struc­tor Michael Thomas, who is a mem­ber of the Royal Aero Club of WA out of Jan­dakot Air­port, was re­cently named the 2017 Wings Fly­ing In­struc­tor of the Year in recog­ni­tion of 25 years ded­i­ca­tion to train­ing pi­lots. The Wood­vale res­i­dent be­came a full-time in­struc­tor at the club this year after a decade of be­ing a ca­sual in­struc­tor and vol­un­teer­ing as an air force cadets teacher.

He has had a love for air­craft and avi­a­tion for as long as he could re­mem­ber and was blessed to be able to work at his pas­sion.

“All I know is that when­ever I see or hear an aero­plane my head will au­to­mat­i­cally turn to­wards the sky,” he said.

“It is dif­fi­cult to de­scribe the im­mense feel­ing I and I am sure other aviators get when­ever we fly an air­craft.

“As an in­struc­tor I am in­deed for­tu­nate and get great sat­is­fac­tion from be­ing able to help peo­ple of all ages and back­grounds de­velop their skills and knowl­edge as they learn to fly an aero­plane.

“To see the ex­pres­sion of ac­com­plish­ment on a per­son's face after their first solo flight is beyond de­scrip­tion and I am grate­ful for be­ing able to be part of this life chang­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.”

He said he was “hon­oured and hum­bled” to re­ceive the award.

Pic­ture: Martin Ken­nealey www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d473071

Fly­ing in­struc­tor Michael Thomas at Jan­dakot Air­port.

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