Jul 2017 Nancy Fitzpatrick (Texas)
Nancy Fitzpatrick is based atÂ T82, Gillespie County Airport,Â Fredericksburg, Texas & IL95, Corn Field Airport, Custer Park, Illinois.
I started flying in 1983 after a trip in a Twin Comanche where I sat in the right seat. I was fascinated by everything and was at the airport a few days later for my intro ride. After that first ride, I was hooked. I earned my license a few months later and shortly after entered a partnership in a Cherokee 180 with one of the local guys. The next few years were filled with time building in the trusty Cherokee and new friends, including a pilot husband that entered my life. He had a 7ECA when we met so I got to build a little tail wheel time in the Citabria. We both pursued our instrument ratings in the Cherokee and a little over a month after receiving mine, our first daughter was born.
I sold my share in the Cherokee and we replaced it with a well equipped IFR Piper Dakota. The Dakota is still in our lives after 30 years and has served our family well. It has been our “station wagon”. In the interim, I had the bright idea of recovering the Citabria since the fabric was starting to look rough and I had just come back from a weekend fabric covering class. Well, that short recover job ended up being a total restoration and taking the best part of 20 years (the project was very part time as there was much “life” in between, including another daughter).
It finally flew last September and we are both putting lots of hours on it. We are lucky enough to live on a farm during the summer where we have our own grass strip and have a lovely county airport where we spend the rest of the year. I have attended OSH every year but one since 1983 (I went into labor with #1 daughter the morning we were supposed to leave) and my husband has not missed one since 1970. Aviation has been a huge part of our lives and for that I am thankful. The great people we/I have met along the way has been fantastic.
Ratings: PVT SEL, INST, PVT SES
Cessna: 152, 172, 182, 195, 210, and a little right seat stick time in a 340 and Citation I SP
Piper: Cherokee 140, 160, 180, Arrow, Dakota, Comanche, J-3 Cubs on wheels, skis and floats
Mooney M2-180 hp and Ovation
EAA’s B-17-left seat
Dream taildragger: Beech Staggerwing
Taildraggers: I love the “back to basics” and skill honing experience that a tail wheel airplane gives. Plus, they just look cool.