He's living his dream

February 18, 2005|by WANDA T. WILLIAMS

Editor's note: The Next Generation is a series of stories highlighting young people in the Tri-State area. A story will run every Friday.

HAGERSTOWN - It took 13 years, but Joshua Brewer's tireless commitment has paid off - he landed his dream job.

The 23-year-old commercial airline pilot flies jets out of Washington Dulles International Airport for Mesa Air Group Inc., a company that operates regional commuter flights for America West, US Airways and United Airlines.

"I love it, I get to fly a jet and it's very exciting," Brewer said. "I've never flown anything of this size and speed."

Hired six months ago, Brewer is one of the airline's youngest pilots. He said his journey to the friendly skies started when he was a child.


"Flying has been my passion since I was 10 years old," Brewer said.

His love for flying started with a birthday gift.

For his 10th birthday, his mother, Debra Brewer, rented a private plane and a family friend flew Brewer and his mother to the Chesapeake Bay Bridge area, where he celebrated his birthday at Hemingway's Restaurant near the Bay Bridge Airport in Stevensville, Md.

"I don't think I was quiet for the entire flight. He let me put my hands on the control to get a thrill," Brewer said. "From then on, I was hooked."

So hooked that when he returned home to Hagerstown, he rushed to his encyclopedia to learn everything he could about aviation. His father has a class paper Brewer wrote in the seventh grade, a paper in which he shared his dream of becoming a pilot.

"It's amazing that he stuck with it. He wouldn't give up on it," his dad, Dwain Brewer, said.

As a teenager, Brewer got a part-time job and saved money to help pay for lessons to earn his private pilot's license at Eagle Air Inc. at Hagers-town Regional Airport.

"It took me about four or five months to get my private pilot's license. I finished on Dec. 5, 1998," Brewer said.

The following year, he graduated from South Hagerstown High School.

Three years later, Brewer and his wife, Kate Brewer, who was his fiance at the time, moved to Phoenix, where Brewer enrolled in Westwind School of Aeronautics. There, he completed requirements toward his commercial pilot's license and three additional flight instructor certificates.

Following graduation, Brewer was hired as a flight instructor at Westwind, where he worked for two years before joining Mesa Air Group, Inc.

Joshua and his wife live in Hagerstown.

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