12 January 2022
+VIDEO Specially developed hand controls have allowed a paraplegic pilot to earn a type rating in a Cirrus Vision Jet.
Clayton Smeltz is the world’s first type-rated Vision Jet pilot with paraplegia, ten years after gaining his PPL in an adapted Piper PA-28.
Smeltz, from Pennsylvania, lost the use of legs in an accident when just 16 months old.
Clayton said on Facebook, “I feel like I just cheated being disabled!
“As a boy I dreamed of being a jet pilot but of course that would never happen. Now, after a year in the making, we’ve developed adaptive controls that allow the jet to be flown by hand!
“Thank you all for your prayers and support. This is an impossible life dream that has now come true – thank you Jesus!”