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Aviation Scholarship 2010 recipient

Brendan R. Flanagan

Brendan R. Flanagan

Louis Mancuso, Sr. Scholarship Fund

Essay for the Louis Mancuso, Sr., Scholarship

A major setback in my life occurred on September 11, 2001 when I was 8 years old.  That morning my parents had taken the 7:50am flight to Washington, D.C.  When I watched on TV the first passenger plane being flown into the Twin Tower my heart sank because I knew my parents were flying that morning.  It was a few hours later before we found out they had landed safely at the airport in Washington, D.C.  They couldn’t get in touch with us because the cell towers were down but they were able to get the last car rental available to head back home.  Sadly, one of my classmates lost her dad that day, he was a firefighter who died trying to rescue people trapped in the Twin Towers.

Although, I’ve always aspired to pursue a career in aviation, the terrorist attacks and the events surrounding September 11 have crystallized my decision to become a pilot.  In 8th grade I joined Civil Air Patrol, Suffolk County Squadron 10.  In June 2010, I attended the Boys’ State Leadership Seminar in Morrisville, NY.  There I experienced the routine and discipline of military life firsthand.  On February 7, 2011 I received and accepted an appointment to attend the Air Force Academy this June 2011.

I had always strived to be different, I’m not afraid of competition and of confronting challenges, I’m perseverant, I do not follow the crowd and have a good work ethic.  At the Air Force Academy I will be afforded the opportunity to obtain a quality military education, be challenged academically and physically, and develop leadership and teamwork skills which in turn will prepare me to serve and protect our country from both foreign and domestic enemies, as an Air Force Officer.