Frederick Apeloos initially took to the skies in the Belgian air force but now combines two roles at Capital Aircraft Group as first officer flying Citation Jets while working as deputy flight operations and training manage.
How did you get into aviation?
Ever since I was a little boy, I have been intrigued by everything that could fly. I started flying gliders at the age of 15, initially in a civilian club, but one year later I joined the Royal Belgian Air Cadets, an organisation offering glider training, during weekends and school holidays, to youngsters aiming to become a pilot in the Belgian air force.
I joined the Royal Military Academy, where I graduated as an officer in November 2005. Unfortunately, due to setbacks I had to stop my military flight training and take command of an IT section. As IT was my second area of interest, I initially accepted my new role, but I couldn't get rid of the dream of getting into a professional cockpit. So I decided to leave the Belgian air force and start again in civilian aviation.
What were some of the challenges you faced?
When I decided to start my training for the civilian aviation, I had
to redo all the training I did in the air force. I gave up my career as
an officer and found a job as a flight dispatcher with a major Belgian
airline. Sometimes I had to work all night, and go flying in the
afternoon. No road is too tough when you want to achieve your goal.
There was a possibility to get a Boeing
Next Generation 737 type rating, but this was delayed twice. As I was
27 already, and couldn't wait any longer to start flying, I took the
opportunity to go flying for CAG, leaving a renowned Belgian airline for
a small corporate company. It was all about trust and an "I need to do
this" feeling. I am very grateful for the opportunities CAG has given
me. Read more...