Post-poll chaos didn't derail my aviation dream

Though she could not afford to train first due to financial struggles, Lucy Kimani persevered and did a course close to her heart. Capt Grace Mutia Losing her father and getting displaced during the post-election violence of 2007 wasn't enough to stop her from being a pilot. Lucy Kimani, a Libra and an extrovert, is the third born in a family of four girls. She is the only aviator in the family. As a child, she loved aviation and when a plane flew past their house, she would go out shouting ''ndege, ndege!" That's how her aviation dream was birthed. An Alumnus of St Joseph Girls High School, Chepterit, her eyes glow with the mention of aviation. Unfortunately, her family got displaced during the post-election violence, and after Form Two, they relocated to Murang'a. She completed high school at Gitugi Girls in Murang'a. After losing her father in 2006, who was the family's sole breadwinner, life became difficult, denting her dream of becoming a pilot. But this didn't kill her ambition, she chose a path that would keep her close to her dreams - aeronautical engineering - airframes and engines (power plant options). After completing her studies, she worked as an intern at Fly 540 and after eight months, due to financial issues, she left the company and went into hospitality. She worked at the Arte Caffe Oval, Tapas Ceviche bar at Westgate, and then finally at Hemmingways Karen. After a few months, her mum and a personal friend came up with a financial plan to help her achieve her dreams. That's how she got into piloting. She joined the Kenya School of Flying. "This was the happiest day in my life besides when I went on a test flight ride on the CRJ as an intern," she says. It was her first time on such a plane. She completed her Private Pilot’s Licence (ppl) and Commercial Pilots Licence (CPL) and graduated. She was awarded the best student in Ground School 2018. She immediately hired to teach Ground School and that's where her interest in becoming a flight instructor was born. She is now a certified Ground School instructor and is working to become a flight instructor. Lucy believes, she will accomplish her dreams as long as she keeps her eyes on the prize. "My advice to young aviators is to have the courage to take the first step, and in God's time, you will get to your final destination," says Capt Lucy. Cheers to safe skies and happy landings.