From staff reports
Beaufort resident and Airports Board Member Dan Ahern was nominated and recently received the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award recognizing 50 years of safe piloting.
To be eligible for the Wright Brothers MPA, candidates must have 50 years of U.S. piloting experience, held a U.S. Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) or FAA pilot certificate with an unblemished record of 50 or more years of civil and military flying experience, of which up to 20 years may be U.S. military experience, and be a U.S. citizen, or permanent resident, during the 50 years of U.S. piloting experience.
Ahern began his love of flying while in the military, obtaining his private license while part of a flying club. Upon leaving military service, his VA benefits allowed him to obtain his commercial license and flight instructor license. He is currently a full time flight instructor based at Beaufort Executive Airport on Lady’s Island.
Ahern volunteers as a flight instructor with both Beaufort and Hilton Head Civil Air Patrol squadrons, is an FAA SC safety team representative and has volunteered and instructed at the Civil Air Patrol National Flight Academy instructing Civil Air Patrol Cadets.
“I very much appreciate this award, and am grateful to have been able to fly for over 50 years,” Ahern said in a release. “I thank the fellow pilots that sent in nomination letters for this award.”
“All of us at the airport are very proud of all that Dan has accomplished,” Airports Director Jon Rembold said in a release. “It’s no easy feat to meet the criteria for this prestigious award and we’re so glad to count Dan as one of our friends. We’re grateful for the many ways he continues to promote aviation and aviation safety.”