Group helps young kids take flight

Local News

Most kids don’t usually get an opportunity to fly in a small, four seater airplane.

One group in Champaign is trying to change that, one rally at a time.

Flying, and learning to fly, can be expensive. That’s what first kept Bob Coverdill from becoming a pilot.

“I kept putting off my dreams for decades”

Now he’s president of Champaign’s chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association, and he wants to help share his dream with others.

“When I took over as president in January one of my goals was to really increase the outreach of our chapter”

They’ve boosted their young eagle rally flights from once a year, to once a month during the summer – and the spark is growing.

“When we first started the idea we had five kids show up”

This month, that number has skyrocketed to nearly 60.

“It’s not my first time in a plane, but it’s my first time in like a smaller one”

Boyd says that’s an important first step.

“That’s the way people get introduced, all your airline pilots started out in small little airplanes learning how to fly, and all the basics of flying, so this is an introduction to that idea”

And it’s that idea that Coverdill hopes catches on.

“Being able to share our love of flying is something that’s easy to do”

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