General aviation is a small community looking to expand its worldwide pilot population by tearing down perceived walls at airports, and getting future pilots up in the sky for their first flight. International Learn to Fly Day on May 15 will serve as a major stepping stone for that mission, and the House of Representatives has added its support.
The House on May 12 passed a resolution that “supports the goals and ideals of National Learn to Fly Day; and recognizes the contributions of flight instructors, flight schools, aviation groups, and industry in promoting and teaching the nation’s next generation of pilots.”
The resolution, introduced by the House General Aviation Caucus co-chairs Reps. Allen Boyd (D-Fla.) and Vernon Ehlers (R-Mich.) on April 21 and co-sponsored by Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.), acknowledges the “tremendous impact” aviation has had in the United States by encouraging imagination and innovation, transporting people and goods, and supporting the economy. But it also highlights the personal aspect of aviation that so many pilots enjoy, stating that “flight brings joy, inspiration, and a sense of accomplishment to those who fly for recreation, pleasure, and work.”
On International Learn to Fly Day, pilots and aircraft owners worldwide are encouraged to take someone out to the local airport to meet fellow pilots, watch aircraft takeoff and land, or even go for their first flight. It could ignite the spark that creates a new pilot.