Sumrall student receives private pilot license

Sumrall student receives private pilot license

SUMRALL, MS (WDAM) - A Sumrall High School senior soared through training to receive his private pilot's license at just 17 years old.

Logan Stephens said he has been interested in flying for years, so it was only a matter of time before he worked to get his own pilot's license.

"I've always been interested in plans and stuff like that and aviation in general, so when I got the opportunity to work toward a pilot's license, I took that as a goal," Stephens said. "It's just always been one of those things in the back of my mind that I've always liked."

Stephens said he had to complete 40 hours of flying, 20 hours with an instructor and 20 hours solo, with the whole process taking about a year and a half.

"It's been a journey, but I've enjoyed it," he said. "My first solo was in September of last year. It was kind of scary at first, but it was nice though."

Seventeen is the youngest age someone can receive a private pilot license, and when Stephens finally got his last week from Majestic Aviation in Hattiesburg, he said it was amazing.

"It was a shock to me, just because I've worked," Stephens said. "It's been hard work. It's been a lot of work."

Stephens is not the only one who realizes it is not  typical for a high school senior to be able to fly a plane. He said his friends are already asking for flights.

"I can fly people with me," Stephens said. "They think it's really cool. There's a bunch of people who said they'd let them go with me."

And that list includes his parents.

"I'm hopefully going to be able to take my parents pretty soon up with me, so it'll be fun," Stephens said.

Stephens is also an Eagle Scout, and his troop leader, Quinn Bullock, said he took Stephens on his first orientation flight on a Boy Scout trip for an aviation patch. Bullock said he and Stephens talked about the possibility of a pilot's license after that, and the goal of getting that license before Stephens graduated.

"Less than a third of a percent of people become pilots before they leave high school," Bullock said.

Stephens was accepted to Louisiana Tech's Flight School and will start classes there next fall.