84-year-old former pilot gets bucket-list wish with flight over fall foliage

Pilot who helped make the flight happen says he was happy to help a fellow aviator

CONCORD, N.H. -- An 84-year-old former pilot was able to check an item off her bucket list Monday by taking in the fall colors from the air.

Earl Gage said his mother, who was an aviator in her youth, now suffers from Parkinson’s disease and struggles with day-to-day activities.

"What the disease takes is her abilities, but not her mind," Gage told Storyful.

Gage said the family has been on a mission to make some of his mother’s wishes come true in her twilight years.

"As time allows and her health allows," he said.

One of them was to see the vibrant foliage of New Hampshire from the air again. On Monday, Gage teamed up with local pilot Cody Mattiello to fulfill that wish.

Gage was able to record part of the flight as his mother handled the controls of the single-engine plane over Lake Winnipesaukee and around Mount Kearsarge.

"Nice job, mom," Gage can be heard saying in the video.

In a Facebook post, Mattiello said he was happy to help a fellow flyer fulfill her wish.

"As a New Hampshire born pilot I feel lucky to be able to share my love of aviation and be a part of making memories like this for others," Mattiello wrote.