Flying Alone: A Memoir

Flying Alone: A Memoir

by Beth Ruggiero York

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Overview

At thirteen years old, Beth’s heart was broken when her father died suddenly. But there was a bigger challenge ahead when doctors told her she probably had multiple sclerosis at 22 years old.

Beth vowed that this new challenge would not put restrictions on her life and embarked on a lifelong dream to fly for the airlines. Starting at a small local airport, the aviation world swallowed her whole, and the next five years of her life were as turbulent as an airplane in a thunderstorm, never knowing when, how or if she would emerge. An agonizing love affair with her flight instructor, dangerous risks in the sky, an agonizing love affair with her flight instructor, and flying broken airplanes for shady companies all intertwined to define her road to the airlines. Flying Alone is told with soul-baring candor, taking readers on a suspenseful journey through the terror, romance and ultimate victory of those years.

Flying Alone is told with soul-baring candor, taking readers on a suspenseful journey through the terror, romance and ultimate victory of those years.

Beth is a former airline pilot for Trans World Airlines. She entered the world of civil aviation in 1984 shortly after graduating from college and, for the next five years, climbed the ladder to her ultimate goal of flying for a major airline. Beth originally wrote Flying Alone in the early 1990s, shortly after her career as a pilot ended and the memories were fresh.

Beth now has dual careers--Chinese translation and professional photography. She teaches photography workshops for Arizona Highways PhotoScapes and her own company, Ruggiero Images LLC. Beth has published a popular instructional book on night photography, Fun in the Dark: A Guide to Successful Night Photography, which has worldwide sales, and she has co-written a book entitled, Everglades National Park: A Photographic Destination. She and her husband live in Fountain Hills, AZ.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780578544212
Publisher: Elizabeth Ruggiero
Publication date: 09/11/2019
Pages: 246
Sales rank: 860,424
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.56(d)

Table of Contents

Flying Alone: A Memoir

Table of Contents

Before Anything: The Promise

Chapter 1 -- The First Steps

Chapter 2 -- Rolling

Chapter 3 -- The Cub

Chapter 4 -- Instruments

Chapter 5 — Flying in Formation

Chapter 6 — Adam

Chapter 7 — On Skis

Chapter 8 — Atlantic City

Chapter 9 — Ramapo Valley

Chapter 10 — Banner Towing

Chapter 11 — Scorpion Bowls

Chapter 12 — Cash Air

Chapter 13 — First Night

Chapter 14 — First Night, Still

Chapter 15 — Please, No More

Chapter 16 — Teterboro Nights

Chapter 17 — When the Sky Turns Green

Chapter 18 — The Wreckage

Chapter 19 — Back to Beverly

Chapter 20 — Dead Flies

Chapter 21 — Settling In

Chapter 22 — Hornebrook

Chapter 23 — Stepping Back

Chapter 24 — Back in Time

Chapter 25 — New Year’s Eve

Chapter 26 — Ready to Party

Chapter 27 — So Alone

Chapter 28 — Heading West

Chapter 29 — Not Quite There

Chapter 30 — Cancelled Plans

Chapter 31 — Final Decisions

Chapter 32 — Reflecting

Chapter 33 — Released

Chapter 34 — Moving On

Chapter 35 — The Majors

Epilogue

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Flying Alone: A Memoir 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
literarymuseVC 8 days ago
Once flying got into Beth Ruggerio’s blood as a teen, she was totally hooked. At first she was sidelined with a brutal diagnosis of multiple sclerosis. But with medication she was able to make a plan to get into flying. It wasn’t to be through the Navy training she had initially planned but she decided to would take lessons and earn and licenses through the hours she put in flying and the tests she would have to take along the way. This is as much an adventure story as it is a memoir for Beth’s way was far from easy and fraught with numerous examples of dangerous events which became life or death challenges to overcome. Beth finds a flying instructor who also becomes her boyfriend. However, as Beth puts it, Flying is number one for Steve and everything else comes after that. Steve is a great instructor but is not too beg on building up a person’s ego. He pushes her as hard as he does himself. But she learns to handle every difficulty, even to the point where it begins to impair her mental health. She flies in poor visibility, in storms, with mechanical plane problems and more. She also doesn’t work for the employers who place employees’ needs and well-being on a priority list. She even works for a company that is flying dangerous material and newspapers that top over the weight limit. While she is doing all this, some of the friends and acquaintances she has met die in brutal accidents that should never have happened. Eventually Beth winds up in counseling and taking anti-depression medication and realizes she will die if this pattern continues. She therefore works her way into commercial pilot work and then returns to school to do Chinese translation work. Her story is riveting, harrowing and a whole message of wisdom and caution about the choices one makes for achieving one’s dreams. The costs may be larger than the dream. Interestingly, the challenges are also about personal victories that shape an individual with or without the assistance of others. There are also some scenes that point out the changes in the airline industry from male to female employees. All in all, this is a fascinating memoir full of unrelenting tension, insecurity and triumphs that will leave readers thinking and asking questions about choices and decisions.