Harrison Ford's Words Of Wisdom About Flying

by Kristie Rohwedder

Thursday afternoon, Harrison Ford was involved in a plane crash in Venice, Calif., and luckily, his injuries aren't critical, as was initially reported. The accident occurred when, due to an alleged malfunction of the aircraft, he was forced to land the vintage PT-22 Recruit on the Penmar golf course. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, Ford sustained "basically some moderate trauma." Ben Ford, the actor's son, tweeted that his father is "ok. Battered but ok!" WHEW. So thankful to hear that he's doing OK. I know I am not alone in wishing Han Solo a lightspeed-fast recovery.

For the past two decades, Ford has been licensed to pilot his small private plane, and the legendary film star has mentioned his love of aviation time and time again. Here are some of Ford's most inspiring, heartwarming, and all-around wonderful quotes about his passion for aviation:

“Flying is like good music: it elevates the spirit and it's an exhilarating freedom. It's not a thrill thing or an adrenaline rush; it's engaging in a process that takes focus and commitment. I love the machines, I love the aviation community. I used to own aeroplanes and have pilots flying them for me, but I finally realised they were having more fun than I was. They were getting to play with my toys. I was 52 when I started flying - I'd been an actor for 25 years and I wanted to learn something new. Acting was my only identity. Learning to fly was a lot of work, but the net result was a sense of freedom and a pleasure in seeing to the safety of myself and the people who fly with me."

The Daily Mail, March 2010

“The focus and the concentration and the attention to detail that flying takes is a kind of meditation. I find it restful and engaging, and other things slip away.”

— via BusinessAircraftCenter.com

"Part of the reason why I wanted to learn to fly was because I felt like I had not learned anything in a long time and wanted to see if I could learn something new. I wasn’t sure if at the age of 54 that I still had the capacity to learn something that I saw as very complicated and difficult. I was so identified with what I did for a living, and I enjoy it, have respect for it, and love the freedom and responsibility that acting provides; however, flying gave me the opportunity to create an identity other than Harrison Ford, the actor. I admire the ability to fly and always loved the sound of airplanes and was curious about them."

Downwind Mag, November 2009

“I'm so passionate about flying I often fly up the coast for a cheeseburger.”

— The Daily Mail, March 2010

"[Pilot Terry Bender] helped me reinvent my life … When people asked me what I did [before], I said I was an actor. And didn’t want to go off into the sunset having only done one thing.”

AOPA Aviation Summit, October 2012

"I fly myself everywhere. I like all kinds of flying, including practical flying for search and rescue. And I also like to fly into the backcountry, usually the Frank Church Wilderness in Idaho. I go with a group of friends, and we set up camp for about five days and explore little dirt strips and canyons ... There are 250 other people up there who train for search and rescue and devote much more of their lives to it than I do. I help sometimes if I'm called in. But when I rescue someone, two days later they appear on Good Morning America, and it seems like I was the only one involved, which isn't the case."

National Geographic Adventure

"I’ve been working for a living, to support my airplane habit."

— AOPA Aviation Summit, October 2012

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