Despite weather issues, Barron breaks world record.
By DANNY HENLEY
Posted Jun 30, 2011 @ 07:51 PM
Hannibal, MO — For most teen-agers, turning 16 is all about securing their driver’s license. For Dillon Barron, getting his driver’s license was almost an afterthought Wednesday after doing what no one else had done before when he flew seven tail dragger aircraft solo on Saturday at Hannibal Regional Airport.
Mother Nature did not make setting the record easy on Dillon, who set the record on his 16th birthday. A low ceiling initially kept the young pilot on the ground. When the sky began to clear, Dillon jumped in a Cessna 170, one of the smaller tail draggers, and flew solo for the first time.
“It was strange looking over (at the passenger seat) and not seeing anyone there,” he said.
It was raining when Dillon came in for his first landing, which he pulled off without a hitch.
After tying the record with his third flight, Dillon was coming in for a landing when he was caught by a gust of wind which forced him to circle the airfield again before successfully landing.
Dillon managed to get the record-setting flight No. 4 in just before a heavy thunderstorm rolled into the airport.
“I had to wait a while to get in the other three,” he said. “While waiting on the weather we had lunch and a good time.”
Of the seven tail draggers that Dillon flew, he calls piloting the North American AT-6A his highlight of the day. The plane arrived at the airport on a trailer this spring after hitting a tree on landing before Barron Aviation purchased it.
“We worked on it so I could fly it on my birthday,” said Dillon, noting the plane was deemed air worthy just two weeks ago.
While proud of his accomplishment, which must now go through the record verification process, Dillon says he did it to raise awareness of local flight opportunities for people his age.
“I’d like to get youth involved in aviation,” he said.
Dillon is quick to give credit for making his record-setting effort possible.
“I couldn’t have done any of this without my dad, my grandparents and all the staff here at the airport,” he said.
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2 posts • Page 1 of 1
Pilot solos seven different taildraggers on his 16th birthday... wow!!! Great job... "the force is strong with this one!!!"
And to think I knew him when.
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