Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Young pilot soars thanks to lessonsSubmitted: 07/30/2013
Story By Hayley Tenpas


RHINELANDER - If Tom Mckenzie had to pick his favorite place in the world, it just might be the sky.

"When I was younger, my grandpa took me up in a Cessna just like this and from then on, even though I was a young age, I just felt that I could do it for the rest of my life," said Mckenzie.

The "rest of his life" begins this fall.

He'll be an aviation student at the University of North Dakota.

But first, he wanted to get his pilot's license.

"He called up out of the blue; he's had an interest in this," said flight instructor Jeff Melau.

Mckenzie had his second lesson at Rhinelander Flying Service.

But before he hit the clouds, there's groundwork to do.

"Usually we start out with a little paperwork, we check the weather, make sure it looks fine to fly and then we go over to the pre-flight extension," said Mckenzie.

Mckenzie soared through the pre-flight check list, and finally, he was in the place he's always wanted to be.

"It's amazing. I'm just so happy when I'm up there and it's just such a great feeling. It's so hard to describe because it's just something that I've always wanted, I love," said Mckenzie.

This flight includes a little help from instructor Jeff.

"This guy is really into flying. I mean obviously he's going to go to school for it but he's just enthused. I think if he had his choice, we'd go right back up in the air right now," said Melau.

Over 14 years, Jeff has taught more than 100 students to fly.

"And I know when I sit in the airplane for a couple of hours and I don't do anything other than TALK, I know that they're at a proficient level and I know that I can solo them, in the airplane and feel confident that they're gonna be okay," said Melau.

Mckenzie still has a ways to go before he's flying solo.

But until then- he's content with just being in his favorite place.

"It's endless. And you can basically go wherever you want and do whatever you want. Just the possibilities," said Mckenzie.

And if you take a glance at the sky—you just might see him.


Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

THREE LAKES - You may soon be able to ride your ATV on parts of State Highway 32 in Three Lakes, if the state DOT approves the new route in the next few weeks.

The Three Lakes Nicolet ATV Club wants to connect downtown Three Lakes to the Nicolet National Forest.

To do that, it needs to open up parts of a six-mile portion of Highway 32 from Town Road X or Javen Road to Lake Julia Road.

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - North Central Health Care blames an "undetermined device failure" for the alarm and lock down in Wausau earlier this month.

A statement released Wednesday said the internal investigation ruled out human activation or remote activation of the emergency alarm.

Earlier this month, emergency crews locked down the hospital and surrounding area after a "Dr. Black" emergency was triggered. That alarm indicates a dangerous person with a weapon. After searching the facilities, no sign of an armed person was found anywhere in the hospital.

+ Read More

Play Video

THREE LAKES - First responders respond to different emergency calls every day. 

Those calls can be more challenging if they are trying to help someone who has autism.

A Northwoods group is encouraging local fire and police departments to train how to work with people with autism.

+ Read More

ASHLAND COUNTY - Investigators want to know what caused a car crash in Ashland County Tuesday morning that killed a Northland College student.

+ Read More

Play Video

WISCONSIN RAPIDS - When John Siewert hears the phrase "Thank you for your service," he always responds with a phrase of his own.

"The pleasure really was mine," the U.S. Navy veteran said with a smile.

Siewert served during World War II, supporting the D-Day invasion in 1944.  Wednesday morning folks thanked Siewert, not with their words but instead with a hug.

+ Read More

Play Video

ST. GERMAIN - The unofficial start to the summer season in the Northwoods will come this Memorial Day weekend.

That means our lakes will be busy and piers will be in use.

Pier of d'Nort steps up to that demand.

The idea for Pier of d'Nort came to owner Carl Surges after he installed his parents' pier.

The business started in Hartford, Wisconsin, in the mid 2000s. Then it relocated a few years later to St. Germain.

Now Pier of d'Nort is swamped with orders this time of year.

+ Read More

MADISON - Wisconsin is joining a multi-state lawsuit against the Obama administration over its directive to U.S. public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identity.

The lawsuit was announced by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and filed in federal court in Texas on Wednesday.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here