Feb. 18, 2008 -- Jamaican born Captain Barrington Irving, the youngest pilot and first person of African descent to fly solo around the world, was on Tuesday (Feb. 12) presented with a Congressional Resolution at the United States (US) Capitol Building in Washington D.C.

The Resolution, in recognition of Irving's successful 97-day historical world mission, which ended last June, was unanimously passed by the US House of Representatives last December. The Resolution supports initiatives such as Irving's non-profit organization, Experience Aviation Incorporated, located at the Opa-Locka Airport in Miami, which encourages under-privileged youth to pursue careers in the aviation industry.

US Congressman, Alcee Hastings, said that because of his inspiration to young persons, Captain Irving is "one of the greatest young heroes of our time".

Irving, a senior at Florida Memorial University (FMU) in Miami, was pursuing aeronautical studies at the time of his mission. The young pilot said that through his historical feat, he hoped to encourage young people to pursue their dreams.

President of FMU, Dr. Karl Wright, who is also a
Jamaican national, said that Irving is a credit to the educational institution.

Irving is the recipient of several awards, among them the Order of Distinction, Commander Class, which was conferred by the Governor-General at King's House last October.

Irving's solo flight has now become a part of aviation history. Beginning in March 2007, Irving flew more than 25,000 miles across 27 countries in his single engine plane appropriately named 'Inspiration'.

Source: jis.gov.jm