CFII Andrew Taylor (right) watches as Pinch-Hitter®
Deanna Eaton completes her preflight inspection
by checking the fuel. Deanna was one of 17
spouses who graduated from the 25th annual flying
companion course, sponsored by the Greater
Detroit Area Chapter of the Ninety-Nines.
June 8, 2004 - The Greater Detroit Area Chapter of the Ninety-Nines recently celebrated the silver anniversary of their "flying companion" course by giving 17 spouses of pilots a better understanding of how aviation works, and the basics for controlling and landing an airplane in an emergency. They used the four-hour Pinch-Hitter® course from the AOPA Air Safety Foundation as the ground school for their event and added an invaluable four hours of flight instruction, four hours of debriefing, and ample hangar-flying.
The Ninety-Nines is a 6,000-member worldwide organization of women pilots, co-founded by Amelia Earhart in 1929. Local chapters often undertake projects to promote general aviation and safety, but to the best of anyone's knowledge, the unbroken 25-year streak established by the Great Detroit Area Chapter for their "flying companion" event is a record.
Already-certificated pilots who sponsored the students were kept busy during the three-day event with three seminars each day on a wide variety of topics, including a Coast Guard briefing on "Airplane Emergencies Over Water" and "What Makes a Helicopter Fly?"
The 45-minute video that is the heart of ASF's live Pinch-Hitter® course is available on DVD through Sporty's Pilot Shop for $23.45. A portion of the proceeds goes to benefit ASF safety research and programs for pilots. A manual for participants and instructors is sold separately.