Aviation stories – A little boy’s dream

The aviation world causes at least some curiosity all over the world. At its peak, it causes a life-long passion. So it was with our Aircraft Maintenance Technician João Leite, who, at the age of eight, put his feet in the cockpit of an airplane for the first time, more specifically of SATA’s AVRO HS-748 with registration CS-TAP.

To his delight, the late CaptainTércio introduced him to the entire interior of the aircraft and told him many of the daily episodes that took place in it. His schoolmates were listening very carefully, fascinated by the exciting study visit, but little João was living that experience so intensely he was already in the clouds.

Trying to open his eyes as much as possible to visualize every detail, he wished he could record that moment and repeat it over and over again. He wondered about the mechanisms that made that extraordinary flying machine work. He realized that people created that structure and kept it flying every single day. He envisioned the trips that could be made over oceans and continents. He realized the work of great responsibility that was made within that space and around it.

That spring afternoon had such an impact on him that ended up defining his future route. He knew, at that very moment, the path he was going to follow. He wanted to surgically explore those wonderful machines and get to know their soul. He wanted to learn to distinguish each one just by the roar of their engines. He wanted to know everything about them and, above all, how they were kept in perfect conditions after so many flights. He wanted to be an Aircraft Maintenance Technician.

Having achieved his dream and after several career decades, he has already interrupted his tasks a few times to show with great joy and in total safety for all the interior of SATA Air Açores and Azores Airlines airplanes to hundreds of school children. He explains the flight instruments, turns on the plane’s total power, makes them “call” the crew, tells them aeronautical adventures, lets them sit in the pilot’s and co-pilot’s positions, sitting in the middle to spot their curious expressions and the glow on their eyes. That glow he recognizes so well.

In each of the visits he accompanies, he remembers his first experience with airplanes and relives the little boy’s passion that moves him every day.

This is us. Everything we do follows international standards and regulations of the industry, but our great passion is what distinguishes us and what makes us fly higher.

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