July 21, 2010
By Dave Hirschman
Tammy Duckworth, a former U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk pilot severely wounded in Iraq in 2004, is now an FAA-certificated private pilot in fixed-wing aircraft.
Duckworth passed her checkride July 19 at Manassas Regional/Harry P. Davis Field in northern Virginia, and she hopes, eventually, to return to helicopter flying. Her husband, Bryan Bowlsby, is an instrument-rated private pilot.
“Tammy is a very rare person, and she was fun to teach,“ said Ben Negussie, Duckworth’s flight instructor at Dulles Aviation in Manassas. “She’s incredibly self-disciplined and hard working. She’s got a great sense of humor, and she made my job easy.”
Duckworth lost all of her right leg and most of her left when her helicopter was struck by an insurgent-fired rocket-propelled grenade. She currently serves as an officer in the Illinois National Guard but her amputations prevent her from military flying. Duckworth lives and works in Washington, D.C., where she is an assistant secretary at the federal Department of Veterans Affairs.
Learn more about Duckworth in the AOPA Pilot feature, "Something to overcome."
SocialFlight users can now publish events via Facebook and Twitter.
Candler Field Flying Club is a young group focused on teaching young people to fly.
Thought about participating in a charitable flying event? Many nonprofit groups host a day at the airport in which volunteer pilots can give flights to eager fledglings. Check with your local airport about what may be scheduled for 2014.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.