National award honors Pittsburg pilot after more than five decades of service


“It was at Ft. Scott on a grass runway and i got in trouble with it on the first flight because i flew the pattern too low. We didn’t have radio, so the instructor ran out, stopped me, and said ‘Fly higher!'” explained Pittsburg pilot Ken Brock.

Which he did, completing his first successful solo flight.There have been countless flights since then.

Along the way, Ken Brock has collected a few small planes of his own, like the Archer.

“That was the first plane I bought,” said Brock.

It allowed him to use his skills for his company Names and Numbers, to visit family far away, and to offer long distance trips for community projects.

Fifty years of safe flying has led to the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award from the Federal Administration, and a proclamation from the Pittsburg City Council naming August 22nd, 2019, “Ken Brock Day.”

He says his experience covers a wide range of changes since that first flight.

“The airplanes are different–they’re faster, they’re safer. And aviation has evolved tremendously,” Brock added.

But, some things never change.

“Aviation is interesting in this way–it’s one of the things you can do that’s fun in the beginning and it’s still fun fifty years later,” Brock explained. “Not too many things you do continue to be fun for fifty years.”

The FAA created the Wright Brothers award in 2003. It recognizes a citizen who has been flying for at least fifty years and who has been certified by either the FAA or the Us Civil Aviation Authority.

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