I am humbled by the decision of the Academy of Model Aeronautics to induct me into the Model Aviation Hall of Fame.
Modeling rewards patience and planning ahead. It exercises our hands, our intellect, and our creativity. Modeling lets us imagine ourselves in another time and place, whether it is past or future. Modeling teaches us the value of a good defeat. It rewards us for persistence.
I can trace every success I've had in life back to the lessons I learned as a young person designing, building, and flying model planes. Whether it was a paper model, a balsa free flight model, or an R/C model, I learned from each experience about the value of planning ahead, committing to the journey, opening myself to new ways of thinking, and celebrating joyfully when my dreams took flight.
Without my modeling experience I would not be where I am today in my aviation journey as an airshow pilot, a member of the US Unlimited Aerobatic Team, or as the President of the International Aerobatic Club. We are all united as one body of aviators who share the passion for flight. Our lineage can be traced back to the greatest of thinkers. How lucky we are to live today when we can so casually partake in the dreams that so many thirsted and died for. Let's never take it for granted.
Thank you to my many friends at the AMA and to everyone I've met on my aviation journey.