Teenagers in control of airplanes? LETU says yes - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Teenagers in control of airplanes!

Teenagers in control of airplanes? LETU says yes

Teens in flight in LETU program.(Source: KLTV news staff) Teens in flight in LETU program.(Source: KLTV news staff)
GREGG COUNTY, TX (KLTV) -

Some of us think sixteen is just too young to be in control of 3000 pounds of steel and glass; a car, in other words.

So what do you think of a thirteen year-old flying a plane? Pilots running LeTourneau University’s Flight Camp think that’s just fine, as long as they have a licensed pilot sitting next to him.

Yes, we’re talking about teenagers in the sky.

Thirteen-year-old Braden Clark from White Oak and fourteen-year-old Mac Amick from Tatum have become flying buddies over the last two weeks. It’s yet another summer camp LeTourneau offers every year.

“Wow, you just flew a plane. You don’t need to go to Disneyland,” I said to Braden.

“No,” he said with a smile.

But students don’t just jump in a plane and grab the wheel.

The full camp is two weeks; one week of pre-flight training, and the second week students actually get to pilot.

“We went through pre-flight where we just kind of learned some of the basics and had some fun. We went through the simulators and went up on a flight. Then in Pilot we learned more about the instrumentation, the different things on a plane and what you need to know and them we actually got to go up and pilot,” Clark said.

Braden and Mac shared a plane with pilot Christian Morales. “We went to Shreveport and back,” Mac Amick revealed.

In Shreveport the kids traded seats, so both flew.

“We ran into some spots where the clouds were pretty rough, but we got through,” Clark recalled.

“Did you get to land it yourself, too?” I asked.

“No, sir,” Braden replied.

“Yeah, right, that’s generally a couple flights later,” I observed.

“Yes,” Braden smiled.

The flight was emergency-free until after landing.

“Is there a bee in here?” I asked referencing the plane’s cockpit.

“Let’s get you out before you get stung,” pilot Christian Morales said.

“Oh there he is. He’s on the window,” I said.

“Oh, yes,” said Morales.

“So this is the bee-flight check?” I asked the pilot.

“Yes,” he laughed.

Another lesson confirmed: Always make a bee-flight check.

The bee flew in after the landing, in case you were wondering. It did not make the whole trip with the kids.

Copyright KLTV 2014. All rights reserved.

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