Nov 2013 Ellie Carter (UK)
11 Year old Ellie CarterÂ is one determined little lady who knows what she loves. Welcome to LadiesLoveTaildraggers, Ellie! Ellie has an incredible story, has received time in a Â J3 Cub and has flown out of Lower Upham Airfield,Â Southampton, Hampshire, UK. AND she loves the mother-load taildragger, the U-2. Â 🙂
I love science and maths and physics andÂ when I was 5 years old I became fascinated with how aeroplanes fly and always dreamed of what it would be like to fly. (as I had not even been on an airliner then)Â I started to read more about flying and became fascinated with U2’s, mainly because IÂ was fascinated with all theÂ physics of flying that high and pilots breathing oxygen and wearing pressure suits.
My mum and dad thought I was strange but encouraged me by buying meÂ books and then taking me to airshows. But when IÂ had just turned 9 I still had not seen a U2. So I thought I would write a letter to them and ask if they could bring one to the air tattoo I was going to so I could see one.
The USAF were awesome to me, they didn’tÂ take one to the airshow but they invited me toÂ Fairford to see one and meet them. The pilots were amazing and kind and let me see their plane and let me chase it in a chase car and gave me some really lovely gifts which are my special things in my room. I got into lots of papers and T.V and things at the time and if you google me as EllieÂ Carter and spyplane you will see some really embarrassing pictures of a very little me.
I was really sad when the day was over as I knew I wouldn’t see them again (probably) and they were the first people I met that understood my interest and I think I surprised them too as IÂ don’t just like planes I love how they work too.
I had an e-mail from Major Cabigas and he said the U2 pilots had said wonderful things about me andÂ he would like to encourage me and has been amazing helping meÂ and telling other people about me ever since. It was Major Cabigas who told his friend Martin about me. Martin lives in England andÂ runs aÂ test pilot schools and he said he would take me for my first flight and has been teaching me ever since 🙂 and I have some good hours now.
Major Cabigas is awesome he teaches me real grown up stuff and Martin teaches me the science parts of flying as well as how to fly and we have done some gravity experiments too.Â I likeÂ CabiÂ very much and he invited us to stay with him and his really nice family and I spent timeÂ at Beale with the U2 crews. And then went flying with another U2 pilot and Cabi over the Sutter buttes andÂ along the rivers and I met some famous old pilots, which was amazing andÂ I didn’t want to come home.
Since then I have done some talks for charity which I like, I am a bit quiet sometimesÂ and I find it scaryÂ to do (but used to it now) Â but I like it as it helps people and if the U2 pilots and Martin didn’t bother to help me I would stillÂ be dreaming of what it was like to fly 🙂 so IÂ know howÂ important helping people is.
I saved up all my money for my first flying jacket and bag and I am very proud to be able to fly, IÂ also like meeting other pilots and learning from them! Christy Liechenstein is cool – she is a really skilful pilot :-)Â so I like to meet people too 🙂 Â Thank you very much for reading my letter.