Millennium High School sophomore Montek Sethi completed his first solo flight in a glider at the Byron airport on Nov. 16, two weeks after he turned 15.
Sethi joined the Northern California Soaring Association in late 2018 and trained almost every weekend for the past 10 months. He recorded 40 flights and 15 flight hours of dual training with glider instructors in that time.
He volunteers to support club activities on the weekend, and he has received $2,000 scholarship from the association. He also represented the city as a youth ambassador to Tracy’s sister city of Memuro, Japan, in 2018.
His father noted that Sethi had hoped to solo on his birthday but was prevented by a technicality.
“At age 15 DMV won’t let him drive an automobile but FAA allows him to fly a glider!” his father, Sunny Sethi, remarked.
The teen’s next goal is to get his private glider pilot certificate at age 16, followed by his private single-engine pilot certificate at 17 and a commercial license at 18 — in each case, the minimum age required by the Federal Aviation Adminstration.