Galetto awarded with the Lilienthal Gliding Medal

Galetto-2012Giorgio Galetto from Italy was yesterday awarded with the Lilienthal Gliding Medal at the 2012 FAI Awards Ceremony.

When asked about his reaction to the award, Giorgio said:

When my wife Marina, the Italian IGC Delegate, sent me an email from South Africa to tell me that I had been awarded the Lilienthal Medal,  I felt a sense of pride and awe. I have joined the Greats of gliding ! Despite my undeniable achievements and the inexorable passage of time, I do not feel my accomplishments are at an end. I am still moved by a beautiful sky full of cumulus or by a nice glider.

As a child, aircraft was everything at home, so it was natural for me to start flying. My father is a pilot - both gliding and power and still active at the age of 88. My grandfather got his license in France in 1915 and as a military pilot had participated in the 1st World War, receiving several decorations of merit including a Gold Medal, a Silver Medal after  88 war missions in addition to several crosses of war, and a special medal from the Japanese (for several months he was instructing pilots in Rome for that Nation).

I owe much  to my wife Marina. Only with her support have I been able to achieve such sporting results. Marina is a glider pilot, but since the birth of our daughter she has devoted herself  mostly to the bureaucratic "paperwork" and to my gliding performance. She has tremendous determination - she is the one who never gives up and is able to tolerate my bad moods.

I never start a competition thinking that I will win. I just try to fly well and concentrate. I could not really enjoy it without the human aspect related to gliding events. It is always a joy to meet again with friends from all over the World, compete with them and then relive the day in the evenings.  I like the sense of belonging to a group of people that share the same passion. I have not lost my enthusiasm. I firmly believe that  this and the support of my family help me to face competitions with the serenity needed to achieve good results.

In just three years my family will celebrate 100 years of flight and my dream is to fly in France, (where my grandfather got his license), with my father and my daughter, as a tribute to the memory of the first pilot of the Galetto family.

It would be nice if there could be  a fourth generation of pilot  in our family, but for the moment  the only love my daughter Chiara has, has four legs, a tail and a mane !