soldier realizes dream of flight school
serving nearly a year in Iraq, Spc. Brandon Gardner was about
to settle into college life at Indiana State University, when
duty called again.
A phone call and a letter to confirm he had been chosen for Warrant
Officer Candidate and Flight School, was just what Gardner had
wanted all along, because this will lead him to his ultimate goal
- flying aircraft for the military.
The local soldiers father, Ray Gardner, told the Osgood
Journal it has been his sons life-long dream to be a pilot
in the military. Actually, hes been flying since he
was really young, about seven or eight years old, Ray said.
He also noted that his son received his pilot license between
his junior and senior years of high school. He graduated in 2006
from South Ripley High School.
Ray also noted that his son had been trying to get into the flight
school for the military for about three years. He was really
excited when he got the news, Ray told the Osgood Journal.
He admitted he was equally excited for his son, who he has been
told is a natural at aviation. He said he had many
emotions, happy, excited and relieved, because he knows how much
this means to his son.
The day he graduated from high school, he wanted to go into
the flight program, Ray noted, encouraging other young people
to look into the military as a possible option for careers. Spc.
Brandon agreed saying, The military is a positive experience
for a small-town boy. You meet people from all over the world...and
it makes you mature faster.
Spc. Gardner served in Kuwait and Iraq as a member of Delta Company
2-238th GSAB (General Support Aviation Battalion) as an aircraft
mechanic with the Indiana National Guard. He told the Osgood Journal
in an earlier interview that it was his goal to fly the Blackhawks
that he worked on at that time. Now, his dad says that dream will
The local young pilot will be launching a new endeavor, one hes
looking forward to when he heads to Fort Rucker, Alabama for flight
school on March 18.
Spc. Gardner is the son of Ray and Robin Gardner of Friendship.