PrideFlight2018 Update – The Eagle
It will be one year in October since I announced the launch of the PrideFlight2018 project and man what a rollercoaster ride this last year has been. When I first thought of the idea of flying around the globe on a goodwill mission I thought surely the LGBTQ community would rally behind such a bold and ambitious endeavor by one of its own, but in reality it has been excruciatingly difficult to get people excited about flying around the world, even if that flight is by a WW II era DC3 with rainbow stripes pained on the wings.
I have had people call the project “Stupid”, “Impossible” and even a “Scam”. Granted trans global flights have been attempted before, even from Indiana but not flying a icon of aviation such as the Douglas DC3 and not by a Gay pilot. It would be a fair to ask the question “Why would anyone want to do this?” Why take the risk? These are all legitimate questions and the short answer is, because I like the challenge and I feel that I can do my part to bring attention to LGBTQ issues facing those communities, organizations and groups through aviation. It does not mean that I think it will be easy, because I know it wont be, but nothing worthwhile pursuing ever is. I am fully cognizant of what planning for a flight like this will entail, not to mention the hard work it will take to raise the necessary funds to make it happen, nor am I unaware of the physical and pyschological demands that this flight will have on me and my crew, but I am not afraid of the challenge.
The hardest part of any project like this is finding the support needed to keep it going. I am the first to admit that it can disheartening at times listening to peoples comments that may not be encouraging or supportive because they cannot imagine how anyone could do such a thing, but I have learned to tune those things out and remain focused on my goal. Regardless of someone else’s opinions about the feasibility of PrideFlight2018 I believe in it and I believe that I can do it, and hopefully others will too. In this world where we have shootings at gay clubs, people who would take away our basic civil rights or hate us for simply being who we are I feel the time is right to try and do something so big, so out of the ordinary and so crazy that people from all segments of society will want to watch and cheer us on, regardless of who is flying the plane.
I don’t need to be reminded that this project is a long shot and and I know there is a high probability that I will fail to get the plane here and if so not even take off for that matter because I will have to rely on the support of many people, companies and organizations but I have to try. In the end that is the best that any of us can do, TRY. I am not sure why it is always so easy to drag people down who are trying to do something greater than themselves, but I am confident that though there are those people who would do just that, there are also many, many more who will join us and help us reach beyond what we could ever do alone and that is the fuel that keeps me going, that keeps this project viable.