Gravette teen sets high-in-the-sky goal with fly­ing lessons

Westside Eagle-Observer - - FRONT PAGE - By Randy Moll

GRAVETTE — Fly­ing a plane has been a dream of Dane Hil­ger, now a ju­nior at Gravette High School, since he was in the sev­enth grade. And he is well on his way to re­al­iz­ing that dream.

Dane’s grand­mother, Mar­sha Heiser, who lives in Prescott, Kan., has a good friend who is a re­tired air­line pi­lot and a flight in­struc­tor. This con­nected Dane with Clarence Easley of Pleasan­ton, Kan., and Easley has been giv­ing Dane lessons since Dane turned 13.

Easley de­scribes Dane as a quiet young man but said he has an amaz­ing abil­ity when it comes to learn­ing the things he needs to know to fly.

“Dane is a very am­bi­tious young man with an un­canny de­sire to be­come a pi­lot,” Easley said. “I have given him ap­prox­i­mately eight hours of flight train­ing, and he does a su­perb job of con­trol­ling the air­craft.”

Dane has been learn­ing to fly in a 1946 Piper J-3 Cub. Piper Cubs were orig­i­nally de­signed as train­ing air­craft (built from 1937 to 1947) and are still a fa­vorite for flight-train­ing pur­poses.

Easley said of Hil­ger: “He is one of the sharpest young men I have ever had the priv­i­lege to be with in an air­plane.”

And, with a lit­tle more train­ing, Hil­ger is likely not only to go far but to reach new heights.

Dane is the son of Jeremiah and Robin Hil­ger of Gravette.

Photo by Clarence Easley

Dane Hil­ger, a stu­dent at Gravette High School, sits in the seat of a train­ing air­craft, a 1946 Piper J-3, in Au­gust. Hil­ger re­al­ized a dream of his and learned to fly in the plane.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.