Community Day Finds First Courageous Flier Back in the Pilot’s Seat



Bailey, ten, has flown before. It is evident in the way she confidently strides to the Redbird full-motion simulator. She positions herself comfortably, selects Japan as her destination, and prepares for takeoff. A smile glides across her face. She is in her element.

Last July(pictured above), Bailey became Flight1’s first Courageous Flier. With the support of her parents and four siblings she completed her simulator sessions and successfully flew her first plane. A year later at the first annual Flight1 Community Day, she had the opportunity to go back to her simulator roots.

Bailey was accompanied by her father and a younger brother Jack, eight, who participated in the non-motion simulator.

Bailey has come a long way since her last time flying. Bailey spent two years going through chemotherapy treatment after being diagnosed with lymphoma. Having finished the treatment in September, Bailey’s father says she is doing well. He describes her as a “go-getter.”

She proved this in the way she took command of the simulator. She appeared to be all ease at the yoke (control wheel) as she checked the monitors with a keen eye. Once her mission was complete Bailey jumped out with the confidence of a veteran. She headed toward her family, the smile never leaving her face.

When asked why she liked to fly, Bailey’s face scrunched up as she thought it over. After a moment like this, her shoulders and hands raised in a shrug as she shouted, “Because it’s cool!”

Her smile widened as though pleased with her answer. Cool. The perfect way to sum up her flying experience with Flight1.

– Erin Schend