Pilot duo ‘prepared as they could be’


Flight instructor Tom Jeffries was one of the instructors who taught 17-year-old Haris Suleman to fly. Haris Suleman was killed and his father Babar Suleman is still missing after their plane crashed shortly after taking off from Pago Pago in American Samoa. Scott Roberson / Daily Journal

Haris Suleman began flying at age 8, before he was tall enough to see over the instrument panel of a plane.

The boy could steer the aircraft using the dials in front of his face while propped up on cushions in his father’s airplane, flight instructor Cliff Allen said.

Allen met Haris when the teen was about 14 and wanted a few lessons. The teen didn’t continue his flight training, so Allen asked about him — calling him “my little pilot” — whenever he saw his father, Babar Suleman, with his plane at the Greenwood Municipal Airport.

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