This Mother-Daughter Duo May Be Piloting Your Next Flight

by Chris Dong

If you have ever felt trapped at the family dinner table in an uncomfortable conversation, feel blessed you weren’t stuck in a tiny airplane cockpit. 

A mother-daughter duo is taking the internet by storm — for flying together. And no, not in the back of the plane as passengers. They flew a Boeing 757 together as pilots, mom as captain and daughter as first officer.

How They Got Discovered

Dr. John Watret was boarding a Delta flight from Los Angeles to Atlanta when he overheard a conversation that the two pilots onboard were a mother and daughter duo. Dr. Watret also happens to be the chancellor of Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University, and recently attended the Women in Aviation Conference.

While deplaning, he decided to ask if he could go into the cockpit to meet the pilots. He tweeted about the encounter and the post ended up going viral. Others chimed in, sharing their stories — and how likely or unlikely they’d manage a flight with mom. 

March also happens to be Women’s History Month, with airlines like United taking part through a unique campaign to spotlight both female aviators and artists.

The Flying Family 

The pilots in command were Captain Wendy Rexon and her daughter, First Officer Kelly Rexon. And it’s not just the two of them that are pilots in the family. Flying is seriously a family affair for the Rexons with dad a pilot for American Airlines and daughter Kate also a pilot.

“The first officer had a great role model for becoming a pilot – her mother,” Watret said. “It’s good for aviation and inspiring for all of us.”

The Upshot

Personally, I don’t think my mom would be jazzed about the idea of flying together. After all,  I was chauffeuring her around whenever I drove a car (yes, she sat in the backseat even if it was just the two of us).  Likewise, in the air, I’d probably be in the pilot seat and mom back in first class. 💁

How do you feel about having family members in the cockpit flying you around?

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Christian March 23, 2019 - 12:16 pm

Why would your mom sit in the back seat? You can’t converse face to face and it just seems super awkward.

tjp74 March 23, 2019 - 3:18 pm

I can’t speak for Chris’s Mother but this is actually pretty normal for Asian culture that older folks prefer to sit in the back even if front passenger seat is unoccupied. They are used to sit in the back of Taxi at times when privately owned cars are rarities.. In Korea, they still don’t call it passenger seat. it’s called “Assistant seat” a term originated from days when you needed an assistant to navigate and give the driver a hand in case of break down… which happened a lot. Even to this date some considers only rear seats are meant for passengers. so it’s perfectly natural for mother to seat in the pack while young “son’ would be driving.

Christian March 23, 2019 - 3:30 pm

I learned something new. Thanks!

Chris Dong March 25, 2019 - 8:14 pm

We stare at each other awkwardly in the rearview mirror — a reflection of our relationship. In all seriousness, @tjp74 basically explained it.


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