Certain moments stand out for Capt. Katie Higgins, the first female pilot in Blue Angels’ history.
She remembers the first time she flew a plane. A pilot for Fat Albert, the famed C-130, Higgins was 19 and nervous her first time manning a cockpit.
“You get freaked out by the littlest things when you are flying for the first time,” Higgins said. “When you hear a little bump, hit any sort of turbulence or hear a noise you’ve never heard before, you automatically think it’s a catastrophe.”
A decade after her high school graduation, Higgins flew Fat Albert for the first time and got quite the thrill from it.
“When I did my first dynamic maneuver, I didn’t tighten my seatbelt tight enough and when I went to push over, I actually flew out of my seat,” Higgins said. “That was a lesson I learned very quickly on how dynamic Fat Albert is. But I couldn’t wait to get back on the plane. I was insatiable. I wanted to fly and make the demo as best as I could.”
Those moments brought great joy for Higgins, who will wrap up her second and final year with the Blue Angels this fall.
Read the full article in the July 21 issue of Navarre Press. Click HERE to subscribe for as little as $38 per year.