Man who’s never flown before builds plane from scratch… But will it fly?

There had been doubters, those who had called him "mad." Many had turned up at the airfield, 40 kilometers north of Addis Ababa, to watch him take off. He had been ready to prove them wrong.

(CNN)On June 15 2015, Asmelash Zeferu sat at the end of a runway, over a decade of work malfunctioning around him. The Ethiopian amateur pilot was as shattered as his propeller.

There had been doubters, those who had called him “mad.” Many had turned up at the airfield, 40 kilometers north of Addis Ababa, to watch him take off. He had been ready to prove them wrong.

But it wasn’t to be. The propeller, hand-crafted from laminated wood, had broken.

The cause? High amounts of friction, taking with it the smoke exit system too. It was time to return to the drawing board and now, following months of repairs and remodeling, Zeferu is ready to line up on the runway once more.

Refusing to take no for an answer

Zeferu, 35, says that ever since childhood he’d wanted to become a pilot. He was on the right track, but when the time came, Zeferu was denied for the most arbitrary of reasons.

Leaving Alemaya University with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health, he tried to enroll at the Dire Dawa branch of the Ethiopian Airlines Aviation Academy.

“I couldn’t fulfill the air school height requirements,” he explains. Zeferu was a centimeter too short.

Despite this setback, Zeferu was unperturbed.

“I decided to build my own aircraft if I couldn’t be a pilot,” he reasons, “then I’d be able to fly high in the sky.”

see more on : cnn.com

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