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  • My Aviation Question

    Hello,

    Iíve had a long time interest in becoming an army aviator Ė just turned 27 years old and I currently make money working as both a freelance Software Engineer and as a professional (now formerly-signed... all good things come to an end) touring musicianÖ the last bit is whatís kept me occupied the last few years and the reason I havenít already taken the proverbial plunge.

    I actually just got back performing on a music tour put on by MWR overseas (have potentially another one scheduled for the end of next month). It was an incredible experience, and after speaking with the service men and women, the itch to join has again resumed.

    I currently live in FL when not on the road, but would like to fly Ah64s so I assume I would need to relocate. Iíve read much of the information about the guard WOFT process vs active so I wonít ask any of that to be rehashed here -- but I like the idea of continuing my freelance Software job over time so the guard has become my preferred choice.

    #1 concern though is I currently take blood pressure pills -- BP is completely controlled with medication, and when Iím able to run regularly (not always possible on the tour bus) seems to not even be necessary at all although Iíll leave that to the doctor to tell me. Otherwise in shape and should have no problem passing flight physical, afast, asvab, or whatever else is thrown my way.

    So thatís the scenario: 27 year old civilian (b.s. Computer Science), likely needing to relocate and go through a medical waiver process, if even allowed.

    I would really appreciate some advice and/or POCs to get started (perhaps states with available slots), or a blunt ďyou have no chanceĒ if thatís the truth.

    Thank you for your help

  • #2
    Re: My Aviation Question

    Hah, I suppose that wasn't so much a "question" as a request for general guidance -- but the main thing is I'm concerned over how the BP issue could be circumvented if at all...

    sorry if the title was misleading.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: My Aviation Question

      Pretty soon, you will no longer have a chance at flying, so this must have your top priority.

      What does your doctor tell you about your BP? Is it close enough to normal that diet and exercise will make the difference? While borderline-high BP can get a waiver, any waiver introduces risk into an already delicate situation.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: My Aviation Question

        You will need to pass the AFAST and take a Warrant Officer Flight Physical so once you get passed those hurdles then you can take it from there. Go talk to a recruiter.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: My Aviation Question

          Originally posted by Mike2K View Post
          The Guard process to apply for flight school is different than the Active Duty WOFT program. The WOFT program allows people with no military experience to apply. The Guard process requires you to already be an enlisted Guard member to apply and if you enlist you will have no guarantees you will get selected. In addition, you will have to move to one of the few states that have Apaches if you go Guard and are set on flying Apaches.
          Excellent information Mike.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: My Aviation Question

            The Guard process to apply for flight school is different than the Active Duty WOFT program. The WOFT program allows people with no military experience to apply. The Guard process requires you to already be an enlisted Guard member to apply and if you enlist you will have no guarantees you will get selected. In addition, you will have to move to one of the few states that have Apaches if you go Guard and are set on flying Apaches.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: My Aviation Question

              Originally posted by Mike2K View Post
              The Guard process to apply for flight school is different than the Active Duty WOFT program. The WOFT program allows people with no military experience to apply. The Guard process requires you to already be an enlisted Guard member to apply and if you enlist you will have no guarantees you will get selected. In addition, you will have to move to one of the few states that have Apaches if you go Guard and are set on flying Apaches.
              Excellent information Mike.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: My Aviation Question

                Originally posted by matthew.ritchie View Post
                Pretty soon, you will no longer have a chance at flying, so this must have your top priority.
                Understood. Out of curiousity, what exactly is the practical cutoff age?

                What does your doctor tell you about your BP? Is it close enough to normal that diet and exercise will make the difference? While borderline-high BP can get a waiver, any waiver introduces risk into an already delicate situation.
                [/QUOTE]

                I've had two doctors in the past 3-4 years, and since I'm on the lean side without any obvious diet flaws, they both recommended I try to lower salt and caffine while taking a lisinopril 10mg pill. Not many other conversations about it, I guess my current doctor figures the pills are working so he schedules a follow up every 4-6 months.

                Do you know the specific range the army considers *border-line*? My BP tends to live in the 130-140 range unmedicated, but some readings have been higher. From past observation on myself, running seems to help the readings so I'm cranking that up a notch.

                Also, it turns out my doctor is/was a reserve or NG doctor, and I believe he was army aviation before going to med school... but I've never had a chance to small talk with him as he's always been very busy. Please let me know if there are any specific questions I should ask that would help. I'm not due back to his office for awhile but could make an appointment if there are things to go over.


                Thank you for your time sir

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: My Aviation Question

                  Originally posted by Mike2K View Post
                  The Guard process to apply for flight school is different than the Active Duty WOFT program. The WOFT program allows people with no military experience to apply. The Guard process requires you to already be an enlisted Guard member to apply and if you enlist you will have no guarantees you will get selected. In addition, you will have to move to one of the few states that have Apaches if you go Guard and are set on flying Apaches.
                  Relocation wouldn't be an insurmountable issue... I can do freelance computer work most anywhere. The non-guarantee is certainly hard on the nerves, but If I don't do it I figure that's a 100% chance of failure.

                  A couple questions I have on that subject:

                  1.) If going guard woft route, how soon after BCT can you apply? can AIT be skipped over for WOCS if your ducks are all in a row and packet is ready?
                  2.) would it be possible to contract with AVN unit for OCS? I would assume you would then be a aviation officer and "guaranteed" flight training?
                  3.) can I take the AFAST and/or flight physical before enlisting, or do they have to be done after?

                  Thanks for the info!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: My Aviation Question

                    Gp. Mike is a warrant officer helicopter pilot. You should link up with him. Go to the army warrant officer recruiting site for more details.

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