QUEENSBURY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A lot of airplanes pass through the sky above Floyd Bennett Memorial Airport. Last weekend, the airfield was a little bit busier, celebrating one pilot who has flown his way into an achievement.
Pilot and Vietnam War veteran Ed Daley was honored at the airport on Saturday by staff from the Federal Aviation Administration. Daley, of Johnsburg, was presented with the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award, commemorating 61 years as an airplane pilot.
Daley’s time behind the controls of an airplane has included over 100 military missions in Vietnam. After his time in the war, he flew as a commercial pilot, and trained with NASA for a manned mission to Mars.
“The presentation on his 61-year career was one of the most impressive things I have ever witnessed,” said airport Manager Robin Mapp. Saturday’s ceremony was organized by pilots at the airport.
Candidates for the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award must have a Civil Aviation Authority or Federal Aviation Administration pilot certificate, as well as 50 or more years of experience in some combination of civil and military piloting or aircraft operations. Up to 20 of those years can come from military experience.
Daley isn’t done just yet. he keeps a TB-20 Trinidad airplane at the airport, and flies it from Queensbury routinely.
Floyd Bennett Memorial Airport is operated by Warren County, and provides recreational and business air services to the Glens Falls/Queensbury region. The airport has also served as the home for the Adirondack Balloon Festival.