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Alaska Airlines Tristan.jpg
Photo credit: Make-A-Wish AK & WA/Ingrid Barrentine

11-year-old fulfills wish of becoming Alaska Airlines Pilot

For most of his life, Tristan Oglesbay has had a deep love for aviation.

The 11-year-old from Idaho even has his own imaginary airline called "Infinity Airlines." But now, thanks to Make-A-Wish Alaska & Washington and Alaska Airlines, his dream of becoming a pilot has come true!

First off, you wouldn't be able to tell by Tristan's amazing sense of humor and spirit, but he has a chronic illness called Pulmonary Hypertension.

"I don't wish this upon anyone," said Tristan's mother Ebru, "his oxygen levels are low which means he doesn't have a lot of energy. You feel short of breath, you feel tired and it's so rare that people don't know a lot about it but there is no cure."

But through it all, Tristan has remained strong.

"He's the bravest person I've ever known," said Tristan's dad Michael, "he's amazingly brave, he's a fighter and I couldn't be more proud of a child."

Now, there's another reason for Tristan's parents to be proud.

Tristan became a pilot for a day at Alaska Airlines.

He recently got hooked up with Chief Pilot Scott Day and Director of Training Jeff Severns for a full day at the Flight Training Center in SeaTac. The aviation expert had a nonstop day of pilot training, Flight Ops tours, a meeting with the CEO Brad Tilden and he even got to show off his skills in the flight simulator.

So how did he do?

"So we have a ratings scale," said Severns, "One to five, and he's easily a five all the way. He did an awesome job and we would hire him for sure."

We know the sky is the limit for Tristan, and it's a day he will never forget!

If you want to help dreams come true for kids like Tristan, join KOMO 4 for the Make-A-Wish "Wishes in Flight" Mileage Drive on Thursday, August 1, 2019 or you can donate your unused airline miles now!