She was only 100 feet off the ground in her first flying lesson when Kay Alley knew that she wanted to be a pilot. Clipping a coupon from a magazine advertising a Cessna Discovery Flight for $5.00, she took her first airplane ride at the Augusta Airport in 1974.
After that first flight she knew she would spend the next several years completing the additional training to become a professional pilot. Today, she is employed as a delivery pilot, ferrying new and used aircraft across the United States and to foreign countries around the world.
Some of the more interesting destinations she has flown to include: the Caribbean islands of Guadalupe, Barbados, Puerto Rico, the Asian continent of China, Russia and Thailand, the European countries of Ireland, England and France, Pacific islands of Hawaii, Saipan and the Philippines, as well as most of the United States and Canada. Aircraft includes single-engine, twin-engine and turbine-jet.
To date, Kay has accumulated over 7,600 flight hours in various Beechcraft and Cessna models, and holds several professional pilot ratings.
Before ferrying aircraft, she had a variety of pilot jobs, including air-ambulance for a hospital, corporate pilot for a local doctor, demonstration pilot for a flying club, and charter flights for a local fixed base operator.
Taking a break from professional flying, Kay became a real estate agent for eight years with the J.P Weigand company. Selling houses was good experience, but she yearned to get back into the sky. The last six years, she has been ferrying aircraft for Pilot International and is happier than ever.
In her spare time, Kay is a dedicated volunteer in several organizations. She serves as Chairman of the Kansas Aviation Museum’s Hall of Fame committee, Secretary of the Board of Trustees of the Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum in Atchinson, Kansas, the Membership Chairman if the Kansas Ninety-Nines, and also serves on the Aviation Advisory Council at the Kansas State University in Salina.
Kay has been married to her husband, Marion Alley, an interior designer, for 44 years, and has two grown children and six grandchildren. She recently took two of her grandchildren up for their first flight in Denton, Texas. After taking a few minutes at the controls, her 10-year old grandson, Tanner, said, “Grandma, this is easy! It’s just like playing my video game!”