Sep 2013 Shannon Gallagher is a PILOT!!
I have always been interested in flying since I was young but the timing just wasn’tÂ right. Then about 4 years ago I met my other half, Chuck, who just happened to have aÂ 1940 Taylorcraft. Soon after I started to take instruction at our local airport. AfterÂ almost a year and a half of time my instructor backed out because of airport politics.
At this point my student pilot cert was getting ready to expire.Â I didn’t fly for almost 2 years, when we found Donnie my new instructor. He wasÂ really great. Â I was scheduled after only 3 weeks with him for my check-ride. Then the day before the exam the weather went to heck, and stayed that way for over a month.Â By this time Donnie had taken on a permanent job flying a twin for some guy inÂ Nashville. Once again I was left without an instructor and no ticket.
By accident we happen to find Buzz. Unlike the other instructors I had he was aÂ full time instructor, so I gave it a shot. We flew together once and the winds got a bitÂ out of line for the airplane so we continued on the next Tuesday. Then flew again onÂ Thursday. Thursday night he said to pack a bag and meet him by 7 AM the nextÂ morning, We were going to West Memphis, Arkansas for my Check Ride. Needless toÂ say my nerves jumped, wondering if I was really ready for this that soon.Â Friday morning arrived and Buzz and I flew to West Memphis Airport.
The flightÂ was absolutely great it was really great weather so I was pleased. Because we wereÂ flying into Class B airspace we had to radio the tower at Memphis center one mile out,Â and asked to be tracked thru the airspace. Once thru their airspace and being reroutedÂ once because of air traffic we finally reached the West Memphis Airport. We spent theÂ rest of the day running thru all the maneuvers and getting me familiar with the area byÂ air, then spent all late afternoon and evening studying and going over everything for theÂ Oral part of the Exam. We finally called it quits at about 11:30 that night.
At 7:30 Saturday morning my check-ride began. Needless to say I had a real caseÂ of nerves but Buddy Made me feel really comfortable. I went thru all the oral and nextÂ thing I knew we were out to the plane. Once all procedures had been gone thru we wereÂ in the air and started our flight. Everything went well but as examiners go he never letÂ on how I was doing. Once back on the ground he looked over at my instructor andÂ smiled and said I’m cutting her loose. Then he took my hand and said congratulationsÂ you’ve passed your check-ride.
Those were the best few words I ever heard. My first reaction was grab my phoneÂ and call home to let Chuck know I passed. I feel absolutely like I’m floating. ProbablyÂ will for a while. Now I’m going to enjoy just flying the plane and having fun.