Ultralight Pilots Goodwill Mission

by Dr. Richard Stimson

in Kitty Hawk 2003 Celebration Events

My wife and I were walking on the beach of Kill Devil Hills, NC last Dec. 17th while enjoying watching an ultralight airplane fly overhead around the Wright Memorial. Little did we know that we would meet the pilot several hours later at a reception celebrating the 101st anniversary of the first flight held at a local hotel sponsored by the First Flight Society.

He turned out to be more than your average ultralight pilot; he had just flown his ultralight all the way to Kill Devil Hills from Venezuela. His name is Omar Contreras and he had flown from Margarita Island, Venezuela, to Kill Devil Hills, stopping along the way in Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, the Bahamas and Florida.

He said his purpose is to spread goodwill by creating and strengthening partnerships among cities along the way. When he leaves Kill Devil Hills he is heading for New York and then flying across the country to Los Angeles. From Los Angeles he will head south to Mexico and Central America, and then head west to Colombia before returning home. His journey will have covered 11,500 miles.

This isn’t the first time he has made such a journey. Last spring he completed a 13,000-mile adventure through South America visiting over 100 cities in four months.

His ultralight is a Clipper 912S made in France. The plane is capable of 75 mph with an altitude ceiling of 18,000 feet.

His trip is sponsored by variety of businesses and other organizations, including Kitty Hawk Kites on the Outer Banks.

In talking with Omar you could sense the spirit of the Orville and Wilbur. I think they too would have enjoyed Omar’s adventure.

Check out his website. It is in Spanish and English. www.volandoelnorte.com

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