Aviator Volunteer At Commemorative Air Force Airbase Arizona
Alan’s Interest in airplanes started at an early age. At 16 years old, he started flying Sailplanes
and at 18 years old he earned his single engine Pilot License.
With the thoughts of what to do after graduating college, Alan went to the Armed Services with the interest
of joining the Marines to be a pilot for them. Even though Alan was already a pilot, one still had
to go through basic training and if he was not to receive his wings by the age of 26.5 then he
would be disqualified.
So he went to the Navy and Air Force and received the same kind of restrictions and concerns.
The Air Force thought that Alan should give the Army a try… maybe he could fly helicopters. However,
after meeting with the Army, they said that if Alan didn’t have his wings by 26.5 years
old, he would become regular infantry.
So the idea of flying for the military became out of reach.
After graduating at Arizona State University, he decided to go to real estate school.
After completing his real estate schooling there was a 2 month wait to take the state real estate exam.
During that 2 month waiting period, he saw an add for a new start-up airline called America West.
He put his resume together and stood in a line of about 3000 people hoping to get in to this new
After being accepted and began training, he was notified several weeks later that it was time for
him to take the state real estate exam.
He went to the front office to speak with the president of the company to ask for a couple hours off
so he could go take the real estate exam. The answer back from America West was No. The president
of the company said either you work in the airlines or real estate but they were not going to let
me do both.
Alan thought about it over night and went back the following day to the president of America West
and thanked him for the opportunity but said that maybe it was best he resign from the company
and focus his efforts somewhere else.
The president asked Alan why did he join America West? Alan said that he was a pilot and wanted to eventually
fly for the airline.
The president then responded by saying… in that case, Alan was just wasting his time because at the
time… they only had 3 airplanes and 9 pilots and he did not see any future growth.
He then went on to take the state real estate exam and decided to keep flying for fun.
Aerobatics was a favorite activity Alan enjoyed when flying the proper aircraft for aerobatics.
Alan continued his aviation interests as a hobby and in 2005 he joined the EAA Chapter 1217 at
A few years later, he was introduced to the Commemorative Air Force Airbase Arizona where they fly
the war bird airplanes from WWII.
He was introduced to a couple of pilots, one of them a super talented musician in addition to being
an outstanding pilot.
They hit it off flying and playing music together for many events for the Commemorative Air Force.
After a couple years of being around Airbase Arizona, the members were getting to know Alan.
Then one day after Alan and his friend Ed finished a musical show for the members, Alan was
approached by one of the administration leaders and basically told Alan, “That lady over there is
in charge of membership… fill out the papers and then this Saturday is Ground School for the
B-17 and B-25 Bombers…. Be there 8;00 AM Sharp!”
Alan did as instructed and before he knew it, he was sitting in ground school for the B-17 & B-25
Bombers as a new volunteer member of the Commemorative Air Force Airbase Arizona.
And now so many years later, he is a crew member on The B-17 and B-25 Bombers & The C-47 Transport.