Young Eagles pilots give Oklahoma children gift of flight

David Ames, of Oklahoma City, has given more than 700 children their first flight in an airplane. A volunteer pilot for the Young Eagles program, Ames, 67, lets a first-time flier take over the controls of his Piper Cherokee Archer airplane — briefly.
by Robert Medley Published: April 8, 2013

For a moment above the ground, aspiring pilots can take control of a small airplane.

The 15-minute flight is in the hands of a young person who never has been in an airplane.

David Ames has given more than 700 children their first flight in an airplane.

A volunteer pilot for the Young Eagles program, Ames, 67, lets a first-time flier take over the controls of his Piper Cherokee Archer airplane — briefly.

“On a typical flight, you'll have a kid who is real nervous in the airplane and apprehensive about it,” said Ames, who lives in east Oklahoma City. “By the time we land, they want to go up again. It's a total transformation.”

Ames and pilot Pat Cohenour, a west Oklahoma City dentist, coordinate central Oklahoma flights for children in the Young Eagles, a nonprofit program founded by the national Experimental Aircraft Association.

Cohenour, 61, turned his hobby of flying his small Piper Arrow 200 into a way to share his passion for the air with aspiring pilots and other young people 8 to 17 years old.

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by Robert Medley
Breaking News Reporter
Robert Medley has been a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1989, covering various news beats in the Oklahoma City metro area and in the Norman news bureau. He has been part of the breaking news team since 2008. A 1987 University of Oklahoma...
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TO LEARN MORE

For more information about the Young Eagles program, go to www.youngeagles.org, or, in the Oklahoma City area, call Pat Cohenour at 495-1612 or David Ames at 615-0003.

On a typical flight, you'll have a kid who is real nervous in the airplane and apprehensive about it. By the time we land, they want to go up again. It's a total transformation.”

David Ames,
Volunteer pilot with the Young Eagles program

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