Soaring high school student takes flight of a lifetime at Chicago Air and Water Show

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The 60th Annual Chicago Air & Water Show is this weekend and every year a very special CPS student gets the chance to take a flight of a lifetime.

Thursday a Bridgeport high school sophomore's love of aviation was taken to new heights.

Angel Cardenas has had a love of planes since the age of four.

"It's the feeling that every man has that he wants to fly, who doesn't want to fly? It's a very surreal feeling when you're in the air by yourself," said Angel Cardenas, a sophomore at Air Force Academy High School.

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Cardenas chose to go to Chicago's Air Force Academy High School to pursue his love of aviation and that was recognized by his teachers.

"He truly loves aviation. He's self-taught and maybe the only student that has every asked me for extra work in aviation and that struck me when he did that," said Air Force Academy High School Aviation teacher Kristen Arambula.

Aviation Teacher Kristen Arambula wrote a letter nominating Cardenas to take a once in a lifetime flight with pilot Sean Tucker during the Air and Water Show.

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"As soon as I saw that I thought I know one student deserves it. I had Angel Cardenas in my head the whole time," Arambula said.

"I want to meet Sean Tucker, I want to meet people who experience what I want to experience so they cannot really warn me but tell be their thoughts on what they do," said Cardenas.

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Today he got that chance! He suited up and took to the skies for the flight of a lifetime.

Back on solid ground it was all smiles for the moment he has been waiting for.

"I was really thrilled to fly with you. You do have talent, you can do this. You can be a great pilot because you have it right here and right here in your heart," said Young Eagles Flight Program Pilot Sean D. Tucker.

"It's better than anything I've ever experience on a roller coaster and I love roller coasters," Cardenas said. "Pretty fantastic!"
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