By Sunny Walia
Richard Pham recording for a scholarship in front of his Cessna 172 Skyhawk
(Photo Credits: Richard Pham)
SAN JOSE, CALIF – Richard Pham is a junior attending Silver Creek High School and is aspiring to be able to fly planes on his own. Pham, “the_crazy_airman” on Instagram was born and raised in San Jose.
He’s had flight lessons around San Jose since he was 14, flying light aircrafts from Reid-Hillview airport on Capitol. Pham also recently passed his pilot permit test at the age of 16, and his longest flight being two hours. Currently with his parent’s support, he wants to work towards a scholarship in flying
When Pham turns 17, he’ll be able to obtain his pilot license, with which he can fly out of state. “The first place I would like to fly to would probably be Las Vegas, which is like a 2-3 hour flight,” said Pham. Pham hasn’t put much thought into wanting to fly as a career but as more of a hobby; He did think it would be cool to fly commercial planes country to country.
What sparked his fascination in planes was his trip to Vietnam when he was 8 or 9 years old. “I was fascinated by how planes fly, how difficult it is and how they can travel to Vietnam with hundreds of people aboard.”
Around sixth grade is when he really got interested in aviation and planes. This is when he would start watching YouTube videos and learning about the early beginnings of aviation, even creating RC models and figures of planes in seventh grade.
Pham’s model of the ATR42 Flagship Plane
(Photo Credit: Richard Pham)
When Pham isn’t flying or learning about planes, he’s either coding, building computers, creating bots or even swimming in his freetime. Pham knows Java, Python, C++, and other coding languages. He aspires to be a part of a startup tech company and is willing to help anyone that has a business idea or even needs help with coding.
Pham is also a secretary of the Villager Bookbuilder Club at Silver Creek. This is a club where he sends books to children in Uganda and he’s even sent them computers. He’s shown schoolchildren how to use Google, Microsoft programs, taught basic coding lessons and he’s even made the school an entire website with an old project design.
Pham concluded by expressing his desire to keep mentoring children in third world countries. He also would appreciate anyone who sees him walking through the halls to direct him on how to start fundraisers for his club.