Fairhope, Ala. (WALA)-- A recent Davidson High School graduate had the opportunity of a lifetime today, helping to fly a plane for his first time.

student flies first time

Jarrett Davis has had a passion for aviation since he was 12 years old, building airplanes from scratch for hours on end. Upon graduating last month, he decided to take his senior pictures at the Fairhope Airport Authority, and that's when this opportunity fell in his lap: hopping on an airplane and flying it.

student flies first time

"It was a great experience,” said Davis. “The first flight went really well. I had a lot more control over the plane than I thought I would've."

Prior to takeoff, Davis was given the full rundown of how the plane operates. Then, he and the pilot, Don Lagarde loaded up. Before long, they were off on their 45 minute journey across the bay.

Davis’s father John said flying today could open more opportunities for his son.

"I felt he would do well, and it may spark his interest in becoming a pilot," he said.


Davis is attending Alabama A&M University in the fall, studying mechanical engineering with a specialization in aviation programs. Prior to this flight, he was more interested in the engineering aspect, but afterwards, he may have a career path change.

"I still want to focus on building the mechanics, but I definitely want to think about being a pilot in the future,” said Davis.


And he wasn’t the only one who thought the same. 

"He was a natural,” said Lagarde. “He didn't have any fear. First thing I asked him once we took off when we got to around 2000 feet was ‘how are you feeling?’ and he said, ‘I feel fine.’”

plane nose

For Davis, Lagarde said quite literally, the sky is the limit.

Lagarde encourages both men and women who are interested in aviation to visit the Fairhope Airport Authority for more information on this career path. 

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