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  • Writer's pictureBonnie Doran

On Eagle's Wings

Summit Aviation is impacting cancer survivors’ lives, one Flight Camp at a time.

A vision of Ben Walton, founder of Summit Aviation flight school near Bozeman, Montana, Big Sky Kids Cancer Survivor’s Camp works with four young adults each year. They experience flying through some of the most beautiful vistas in the world, including Yellowstone National Park.

The four campers participate in all aspects of flight instruction, from ground school to takeoffs and landings. The goal is to expose them to flight, not necessarily to push them into full-time flight training.

The camp is a chance at an incredible experience after stolen opportunities for some due to cancer treatment. For others, it’s about removing limitations and revealing new skills and abilities.

Begun in 2014, the camp works with Eagle Mount, a charitable organization established in 1982 to help children with disabilities and cancer. Every summer, Eagle Mount identifies four young adults who have overcome cancer and brings them to Summit. Over the course of a week, the kids learn every aspect of flying: ground school, preflight, takeoffs, and landings.

Summit Aviation needs $12,000 per student to sponsor the camp. For more information and to donate, visit the webside ( or visit the fundraising page (

Adapted from AOPA Pilot magazine, January 2019


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