Brian Deegan has been skydiving for 7 years, and is certainly no stranger to a Cessna aircraft. Earlier this week was his first experience as pilot, with an introductory flight lesson at University Air Center in Gainesville, FL.
The lesson began with pre-flight checks for the plane. The Cessna-192 was glistening in the early morning sun with dew still hanging on its wings. Brian and his instructor carefully checked all of the safety lights inside and out of the craft before moving on to check the fuel valves along the exterior of the plane. After some ground instruction and all of the safety checks, Brian took the pilot’s seat and began his first taxi on the tarmac.
Even though this was his first time piloting an aircraft –ever- the instructor had enough confidence in his ability to allow Brian the privilege of taking off. After reaching optimal speed, one steady pull on the controls and they were airborne. The next half hour was a glorious experience of cruising over his hometown of Gainesville, practicing turns in the plane, and even experiencing the “zero-g” effect. After his instructor showed him how and performed a “zero-g” maneuver, Brian had his turn. Needless to say, the introductory lesson was an amazing, and addicting, experience. I’m grateful to have been welcome on the tarmac with them and allowed to take picture of the beautiful plane.