Big Moves! Black teen makes history as youngest gilder pilot

By Duchess Magazine

Sixteen-year-old Caleb Smith from Maryland, a high school sophomore at Charles H. Flowers HS in Prince George’s County, MD is rewriting history as the youngest private glider pilot in the United States.

Through his amazing success, he hopes his story can inspire other young ones to chase even after their wildest dreams.

The young history maker caught the aviation bug on his 10th birthday after a discovery flight in Bowie, MD, and since then, he never looked back. He sharpened his skills through instructions over the years but the pandemic brought on the golden opportunity to get serious and take things to the next level professionally.

Caleb earned a scholarship to gliding school which helped him gain the necessary expertise. With dedication and passion, he completed his first solo flight, 33 total flights, continued another 12 solo flights, passed his written exam with the Federal Aviation Administration, and received his glider pilot’s license. And now, at just 16, Caleb bagged an official recognition by the FAA as the youngest private glider pilot in the U.S.

Smith credits Skyline Soaring Club as well as Destiny Aviation Services for their guidance and support in helping him pursue his goal and achieve this record-breaking accomplishment.

After graduation, he plans to attend the U.S. Air Force Military Academy and eventually become a commercial airline pilot.

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