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Options at 34 years old to fly in the military


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#1 Topguntwo2020

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 00:52

Hello everyone and thank you all for your valuable insights. 

 

 

I am 34 years old turning 35 next year on April. My dream has always been to be a helicopter pilot but I got the wrong advice from a fellow helicopter pilot near my local small airport, who told me to stay away from helicopters and go fix wing, the irony was that he was giving helicopter tours on his own helicopter to the public lol. Well 17 years later with 3000 total flying hours ( 1300 hours on an Embraer 120 part 121, 50 as a captain), gold seal multi-engine instrument instructor, a bachelors degree in Professional Aviation and now about 7 years as an Airport Operations Airfield Officer- I find myself feeling empty and wondering what is it that I need to do next to get that spark back?. It wasn't until this month that I woke up and realized that maybe the military is the answer for my helicopter long lost dream. I have done some digging around the web and this website and I have learned about the WOFT program in the Army, but the age cut off is 33, is that really the case? I haven't flown is 7 years but I have kept all my aviation licenses current. Realistically, it will take me a few months, to refresh all my aviation knowledge and to do a hardcore Avsab and Sift test prep. 

 

 

So finally the questions I need to ask you all honorable fellow aviators is what are my choices if I want to fly in the military other than the Army WOFT for my age and experience? 

 

 

I don't want to quit my current job. I like my current job very much and I'm wondering if as a local government city job, I can be a reserve military pilot and be excused for military deployment without affecting my current job? apply for USERRA maybe  

 

 

Thank you all very very much!!



#2 Captainstank056

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 06:37

Talk to a recruiter somewhere and mention this and ask about an age waiver. If he/she says its not an option, walk to another recruiter or find a different station. Waivers are possible and (I dont know frequency) have been approved for a lot of people
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#3 Simpsj17

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 09:30

The waiver would get approved at the proponent after submitting the packet.
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#4 ByteFlighter

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Posted 11 July 2018 - 19:52

To be 100% frank : It is NOT *Impossible*, but HIGHLY unlikely you'd get a waiver especially as a non prior service person - like 95% unlikely at your age.

 

But hey, go for it dude.


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#5 Flim

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Posted 15 July 2018 - 17:12

I had one at 33... They need people so bad, it would get signed!

 

I would do reserve or Guard... do not come active!


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#6 XIIGage

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Posted 16 July 2018 - 21:59

I had one at 33... They need people so bad, it would get signed!

 

I would do reserve or Guard... do not come active!

 

 

Why not go active? Just curious


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#7 Thedude

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Posted 16 July 2018 - 22:13

Why not go active? Just curious


If your goal is to be a pilot the Guard offers a much more enjoyable pilot experience. If you want the military experience with a side of being a pilot active duty will work well.
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#8 mike0331

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Posted 17 July 2018 - 17:33

If the guard will give him a waiver, that's good. But he should keep in mind it typically seems to be a bit slower of a process, especially depending on state funding/backup. 

 

Mike


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#9 RitzBitz2000

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 15:17

Ha, welcome to the club, I'm 32 and Board Tuesday after a whopping 10 days of time to get a pack together.

#10 flanker

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 16:17

Like I already said in my previous post in the other thread that you made, I wouldn't recommend the WOFT program.  My experience is only with the active side. I joined when I was 29. You will loose 10 years of your life and much of your freedom. Aviation in the Army is not like the civilian Aviation you know and love. It will break your heart, at least on the active side. The Army is still the Army without its Aviators and that is the mentality that thrives in this ground force culture. In the big Army's eyes you're only an Aviator in title and nothing else. Had I known this, my path in life would have been very different.

 

I can't speak personally about the NG side, but all my national guard friends seem to be having a blast compared to us active folk. They all have side jobs flying or doing other fun sh*t. That is something you might want to look into.

 

Also If you really want to fly helos go rent a 206 or something. 


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#11 ByteFlighter

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 16:24

That is a rather fair, but biased view from the post above.

 

If you want to serve your country and fly while doing it, try to get your Age waiver. Frankly, it seems you don't love the part 121 stuff as I've never ever heard of a single person giving up a captain slot at the regionals (less than 3 years until getting to the Majors like you) for a glorified FOD and landing lights inspector at an airfield.

 

If you want to fly RW, the Army is for you. It ain't the Air Force or Navy, as far as culture goes, and I agree with the above poster on that, but we do engage the enemy at close range while providing real CAS to our buddies down range (depending on air frame).

 

If you didn't get fired and lose your wings at the regionals, and you are serious about flying RW. The Army is the place for that.

 

If you are attempting to restart your flying career after having something catastrophic happen at your former regional employer, you can try, but warning: the Flight SWOs on the national selection board will scrutinize your packet thoroughly prior to letting you in; it ain't a cake walk if you have the hours you are claiming.....






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