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Flying Alone

24 October 2019

Flying Alone: a memoir, Beth Ruggiero York, 2019, ISBN 978-1-7333996-0-9, 236 pp.

Flying Alone: a memoir by Beth Ruggiero York

Beth Ruggiero York is highly accomplished and admirable for her multiple talents, succeeding in the male centric industry of private as well as commercial aviation, photography and writing.

Her writing style is easy and smooth without triteness or jingoism—simply a pleasurable read. York wanted to succeed in piloting for an airline as a career and began as a flight line worker at an FOB. Her career had rough patches due to a flight instructor who somehow did not end up first at an accident site as well as flying for shady freight operators (she illustrates aspects of shady Part 135 operators as well as those operating in the clear but York does mention an undesirable system which seems a bit endemic). Her website is for this book, her other titles as well as photography workshops.

Along the way York describes flying Cubs to twins by way of a welcoming mix of a love for flying combined with nitty-gritty authorship. Amazingly, she dealt with multiple sclerosis with a similar mix of not surrendering as a victim with pragmatic realism. She finished her aviation career piloting for TWA until medically retired—and, luckily for us, segued to authorship as well as photography. This is a book is a rewarding read about an unusually accomplished, subtly heroic woman.

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