Al was born in Alaska and has been stuck there ever since. As a teenager, he got a ride in the back seat of a Super Cub to a remote hunting camp in the Wrangell Mountains, which convinced him he needed wings. He went off to Oregon for college with a plan get smart and make money so he could afford them.
Mark has lived in Arizona since 1974 and has had a long career in the Aerospace industry beginning with Sperry Flight Systems in the early 80's. From Sperry he moved on to W.L. Gore & Associates where he was involved in microwave coaxial interconnect designs used in avionics, radar and medical devices. If you had asked Mark at age 12 what he wanted to be when he grew up he would have said "an inventor!" He is named as "Inventor" or "Co-Inventor" on 13 U.S. and European Patents so it looks like he fulfilled this dream pretty well.
Few pilots can say they began flying in a Texan T-6 at the age of 12. That’s when Dave Powell was first exposed to flying by his father. They also flew a Navion his dad’s company used for business. Once out of college and working, Dave made the time and had the funds to get his pilot’s license, initially using the privileges to visit family in Texas and Michigan.
Chris Berge was raised in Santa Cruz, CA, for 13 years until his family moved to the San Francisco bay area, where he has resided ever since. Currently, he and his partner, Ruth Bley, own an electrical construction company performing work on bridges, tunnels and other infrastructure projects. Chris is the father of two daughters who are currently in school.
Richard "Rick" Lach, from Kernville, CA, has had a passion for aviation from an early age. He can recall riding his bike to Van Nuys Airport, where he would sit on the railroad tracks and watch planes land. After joining the Air Force he spent four years maintaining F-100, F-101, and F-105 in the Far East. In 1998 he decided that his high-end Computer Communication business wasn't for him anymore, and sold out to buy a Lodge in Alaska. Amongst the wilderness his new venture had a bar, restaurant, rooms, cabins and a 200 foot landing strip.
Patrick Romano always knew he wanted to fly. So it was not a surprise to anyone when he took his first lesson at age 14 and started instructing by the time he was 18. After a decade of flying everything from helicopters to business jets, he had to get a real job. He is now operating several Domino’s Pizzas in the Denver area. Patrick and his wife Lindsey enjoy flying the backcountry. He is still an active instructor and in his spare time he consults
Like many others, Bobby Capozzi started his quest for aviation by building and flying model airplanes. Model aircraft were the stepping stones to Bobby soloing at 16, achieving his private at 17, and purchasing a 1953 PA-22 two weeks later. “I bought it as a time builder and continued preparing for my commercial and instrument at 18,” he said. “Then I shifted to pursue general aviation as a hobby instead of a career.” He replaced the PA-22 with an Aeronca Champ six months later.
Eric was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia far removed from the allure of backcountry flying. His first impressions of aviation were limited to the science fiction television shows and movies of the day: Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek, Star Wars, etc. As kids, he and his friends would sneak into the Hartsfield Airport terminal and pretend they were travelers going to faraway places.
Brett is a Georgia native, and although school and a job overseas took him away for many years he always hoped he’d return to his roots. As luck would have it an opportunity working in finance for a major airline brought him back to the state about 15 years ago, and he’s been here ever since.
While Brett didn’t grow up in an aviation family, from an early age he had a passion for flying.