Tanker Pilot Geoffrey “Craig” Hunt left the Hollister Airbase in October and lost his life in the line of duty while fighting a fire at Yosemite National Park last year.
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association have established a scholarship in his name to help young students get the financial backing they need to learn to fly.
The average cost for a student to learn to fly is $10,000 and with a $5,000 scholarship from the association this price tag could be cut in half. The fact that the student will need to raise the other half of the money ensures they truly want to learn to fly, explained Mike Morlan, a fire captain with CAL FIRE in Monterey, in an email to the Free Lance.
Hunt, 62, of San Jose, was a 13-year veteran pilot of Dyncorp International under contract with Calfire.
Friends and co-workers took to the website calfirepilots.com to share condolences and memories following Hunt’s death.
Fellow Pilot Jerome Laval recalled sharing cigars with Hunt on several occasions.
“Craig’s scientific and logical approach of any subject was brilliant and we learned a lot just discussing and debating with him. ‘The Professor’ became his nickname and quite a teacher he was,” wrote Laval. “So long Craig. May your noble soul rest in peace.”
To donate, send a check or money order payable to “AOPA- Craig Hunt Scholarship” to Mike Morlan at 2221 Garden Road, Monterey, CA 93940. The association is a 501c3 with an employer identification number of #20-8817225, which makes donations tax deductible.