It has been a big couple of years for Ryan Campbell and he has only just turned 20. His solo, world record breaking flight around the world has established Ryan as determined, capable and confident. As a result he has been on the public speaking circuit and has signed a book deal with Harlequin.
A few weeks before Christmas Ryan moved to Maitland where he has a new job with a company called Altitude Aviation. Ryan flies twin-engine aircraft for patient transfers and private charters.
He said that it was something that he had talked about before he left on his solo flight but had not been decided.
While he was away through the company followed his journey and could see that Ryan was an extremely capable pilot and offered him the job after he returned.
Ryan said: “I had speaking tours and had signed the book deal and I wasn’t expecting to move out of home at that stage but the job was too good to miss.”
Now Ryan is busy working for Altitude Aviation and writing the book in his spare time. The book will cover Ryan’s journey in aviation with his family, the preparations for the flight and the journey.
But he is happy to be returning to the Bega Valley and especially Merimbula for Australia Day.
“To be named Australia Day Ambassador is such an honour for me. For the last two years I have been focusing on one thing and I never looked much beyond that and so this is amazing to be named ambassador.”
He admitted that it had been a shock to his system to return to an everyday, structured life but that it was wonderful how people came and spoke to him about their memories of his flight.
“To hang on to parts of the flight and share those with local people knowing that it was significant enough to make me ambassador is great and to share that story in one of the coolest places on earth is amazing.”
Ryan will speak at the Merimbula Australia Day ceremony at Rotary Park, Merimbula. He said that he will talk about his flight, the support he received from the Bega Valley and the South Coast and the patriotic spirit of the valley.
Unfortunately Ryan’s surfboard didn’t make it up to Maitland but he said it would definitely be getting the board out on the Australia Day holiday on Monday.