I’ve got a new set of wings, and a fresh temporary airman cert for the B-737.
As you can see, my Dad wasn’t the one to present me my wings. He passed away suddenly back in August. As difficult as it was for me to continue through interviewing and training, I know my dad wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. The last four years, he was with me every step of the way. From solo day, to my first pilot certificate, to my first type rating, and 121 flight. There was a time I thought I wouldn’t be able to fly again. It was just too painful. But now I know flying is a gift. It brought us closer while he was here, it gave me perspective in the stillness of the sky and now, it will be the way I visit with my Dad each time I get in a United flight deck.
I believe everything happens for a reason. Three years ago, my Dad did a Line Check on the 777 for Julie Savage. They talked for hours about their careers, flying and their families. My Dad told her about my flying journey and asked if we could connect. In the spring of 2020, I was quickly approaching ATP mins with no jobs in sight (covid). We talked for hours and that was the start of an amazing mentorship. When my Dad passed away, Julie was the first United pilot to call me. She had lost her sister suddenly and knew the pain I felt. She helped my family through an unimaginable time and continued to support me though the interview and upcoming class date. When it came time for the wings ceremony, I couldn’t imagine it without my Dad but I knew he wouldn’t want me to stand alone. What he loved about United was that it was more than a job, but a family. Julie flew round trip to Denver to be there that day.
After 6 weeks in training, I’m home now getting my new uniform dry cleaned and ready to go because I leave for IOE on Saturday! I have two trips to get the required 25 hours. My line check flight is with 737 Captain and LCA Julie Savage. What a full circle moment, from my Dad doing her 777 Line check and now she is doing mine on the 737.
I am EWR based for now, but got DCA in a vacancy bid not long after starting so I’m looking forward to that transfer in the coming weeks. I’ll start posting my schedules again starting at the end of this month.