Pride of LT
Michael Brewer has been seen by millions of people around the world racing across the sky at speeds just shy of supersonic. Capt. Michael Brewer is the Right Wing Pilot for the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, flying the No. 3 jet. Better known as the Thunderbirds, Capt. Brewer performs for people displaying the pride, precision and professionalism of American Airmen. In every hour-long demonstration, the team combines years of training and experience with an attitude of excellence to showcase what the Air Force is all about.
After LT, Capt. Brewer went on to graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2005 and commissioned from Officer Training School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama in 2010. Prior to commissioning, he flew as a flight instructor, cargo pilot and airline pilot. Prior to joining the Thunderbirds, Capt. Brewer served as an F-15E Instructor Pilot and Flight Commander, 334th Fighter Squadron, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. He has over 5,000 total hours and 1,050 hours in the F-15E, including more than 315 combat hours over Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Inherent Resolve.
A self-proclaimed “air show junkie,” Brewer grew up watching the Thunderbirds. He is proud to be part of the Air Force air shows and prouder still to be in the air flying, as opposed to on the ground watching. He was a member of the LT Aviation Club and received his pilot’s license his junior year with the late Bill Garton serving as his solo instructor. He encourages students to find what motivates you and grab on to it.
Brewer returned to LT this fall to speak in Aviation class and with students.
Who knew that a chance meeting and fast friendship could spur the formation of a multi-billion corporation, and who knew that LTHS English teacher Joseph Maffey was the catalyst?
Several summers ago, Maffey embarked on a 77-day summer vacation, travelling 16,000 miles by car to visit each of the 48 contiguous states. While in Rhode Island, Maffey stopped at a sidewalk sale, where a student, who had just graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design, was selling some of his artwork. The graduate and Maffey struck up a conversation about teaching and the cross country journey, and Maffey bought a piece of artwork. The artist asked Maffey where he was staying, and when Maffey responded he was heading up north to a campground, the student offered him a blow up mattress in his apartment. The two had pizza that evening and shared some breakfast the next morning. When the student artist befriended Maffey and opened up his home to him, little did either of them know that he – Joe Gebbia – would go on to found Airbnb, providing a platform where more than 6 million people in 191 countries open their homes to strangers.
Maffey continued on his journey, and city after city, he met strangers, many of whom offered him a couch, a spare room or blow up mattress. In total, 35 strangers befriended Maffey and out of pure friendship and generosity opened up their homes and hearts to him.