Have you ever had a dream to fly? To soar into the skies in control of an aircraft? In an inspiring and truly uplifting new video, U.S. military pilots in Lithuania and their Lithuanian military counterparts, share their stories of becoming aviators. The S. Darius and S. Girėnas Airfield, with support from the U.S. Embassy Vilnius, brought these stories to life, with the help of youth from Kaunas aviation clubs who interviewed 34 pilots this autumn and winter.
“Stories of Aviation” is an intimate portrait of pilots sharing their dreams, stubbornness and unbreakable will, while trying to achieve their dreams. In the video report, pilots describe not only their most beautiful and inspiring moments, but also times when even misfortune didn’t break their singular desire to achieve their goal.
“The main aim of this project is to share good examples of how simple people, pilots, driven by a childhood dream and determined to pursue it no matter what, were finally rewarded with the thing they wanted the most – to fly,” said Eugenijus Raubickas, director of the S. Darius and S. Girėnas Airfield. ”With this project, we want to remind people never to give up on their dreams, no matter how difficult the way seems.”
Many of the pilots said the most grueling part was the academic study required to become a pilot. But in the end, it was all worth it.
“The most difficult part is studying. You have a short period of time to learn a lifetime of information. We say it’s like drinking water from a fire hose,” said Ben Ramos, who flies “AH-64 Apache” helicopters.
“There are some difficulties, but they can be overcome if you really want something. The most difficult part of becoming a pilot is hard to express. It is always very boring to read all those books, but after that, it’s such fun to fly,” – said Gintautas Čiuoderis, a helicopter squadron pilot in Lithuania’s military air force.
Founded in 1915, S. Darius and S. Girėnas airfield is one of the oldest airfields in Lithuania and among the oldest in Europe. The airfield is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Due to this on July 17- 18, 2015 aviation show will be held.
People waited at the airfield for Lithuanian-American pilots Steponas Darius and Stasys Girėnas to land their legendary flight across the Atlantic Ocean, which began at Floyd Bennett Field in New York on July 15, 1933. The transatlantic pilots’ flight tragically was unsuccessful; the airfield is named in their honor.
S. Darius and S. Girėnas airfield is a national treasure, protected by the Lithuanian government, and is included in a list of “The best flying destinations in Europe.”