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Can A Quadriplegic Pilot Still Work?

by John M. White |

For nearly 20 years Errett Bozarth spent as much time flying airplanes as he did on the ground. He was a Marine Officer, flight instructor for Marine aircraft, and a pilot with American Airlines based in Dallas, TX. Errett Bozarth, Pilot That is until an automobile accident ended his flying career in 1989 after which he became paralyzed from the neck down with minimal shoulder mobility. Since the accident Bozarth has taken part in a vocational rehabilitation program in which he studied computer science. Bozarth described his continued desire to excel by saying "I think within each of us there are varying degrees of innate drive to perform," he said. "Through good fortune and no particular talent of my own I happen to have, I guess, a personality that does not readily accept defeat or challenges that I can't deal with." Then came the call. Indiana State University Aviation Technology Chair Harry Minniear asked him to teach one course on Turbine Aircraft Systems. Both had met previously when they were working with the Indiana National Guard. Bozarth's class teaches students how to trouble shoot problems in the cockpit, and the students have responded with enthusiasm to his intimate knowledge of aviation. I guess a quadriplegic pilot can still work! Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch! JetAviator7 ps: Don't forget to sign up for our newsletter "All Things Aviation" here!

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