Check out this inspirational story!
“The Spirit of Malaysia” makes a historic visit in Denver
Last week, Captain James Anthony Tan and his plane, The Spirit of Malaysia, touched down in Denver for a quick stopover, on a mission to be the youngest pilot to fly solo around the world in a single engine aircraft. His expedition will take him across the Northern Hemisphere, visiting 20 countries with 30 scheduled stops.
His quest, “1Malaysia Round the World,” is a 21,900 nautical mile route to be completed in 50 days. Having been born with dyslexia, he wishes to raise awareness on the issues faced by children with special needs and empower them to chase their own dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem.
“I want people with special needs to believe in their own ability. We must never fall into self-pity. I don't want any special passes. We must progress knowing that we made it by our own human will. Being special is a gift, not a curse. Never use your gift as an excuse not to succeed in life.”
Tan has faced challenges along the way, such as weather and dramatic changes in environment. Most recently, he experienced mechanical issues that grounded him in Vancouver, Canada, and delayed his originally scheduled arrival in Denver, cutting into much desired time to explore Colorado. “I would have loved to visit Royal Gorge Bridge, and of course, Rocky Mountain National Park.” He took off for Indianopolis, IN, then Teterboro, NJ, after just a one-day stop, but hopes to make a return trip to Denver in the future.
Upon the successful completion of his expedition, Tan will not only be the youngest pilot to fly solo around the world in a single engine aircraft, but will also be the one to do it in the shortest duration among the youth record holders of this category, recognized by the World Record Academy.
For more information on “1Malaysia Round the World” and to track Tan’s journey, visit www.1rtw.com.my.
Fast Facts about Captain James Tan
- 21 years old
- Father is Malaysian, mother is Welsh
- Diagnosed with dyslexia at 8 years old
- Started his flying career at the age of 18 at the Western Australia Aviation College
- Inducted into the Malaysia Book of Records in 2012 for a previous expedition of 13,000 nautical miles from the UK to Bangkok and back
- Flying a Cessna 210 Eagle, dubbed The Spirit of Malaysia, for the “1Malaysia Round the World” expedition