“My wheelchair is my blessing, I have so much more rockin n’ rollin to do!” Leslie Irby said.
Leslie Irby has made history as the first known Black woman with a disability to earn a pilot’s license.
The East Point, Georgia, resident didn’t let a wheelchair hinder her from achieving her goals. At age 16, she began flying at a local airport in Atlanta as part of the ACE (Aviation Career Enrichment) program. According to Because of Them We Can, she always looked up to famed Black aviator Bessie Coleman.
The ACE program was hosted by the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals. Because of other Black pilots and professionals, Irby got the chance to manifest her dreams.
However, a devastating accident changed everything for the young fly girl. Seven years after her first flight, she was involved in a car crash that left her with a lifelong disability in 2013. Two people walked away from the collision, two were paralyzed and two died. Irby was one of the two who were …