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Duckworth earns fixed-wing aircraft license
Associated Press

Tammy Duckworth

 

Associated Press

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Published: 8/5/2010 7:26 AM

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SPRINGFIELD -- Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs Tammy Duckworth can fly again.

The Hoffman Estates veteran was a helicopter pilot in Iraq when she lost both her legs and partial use of one arm in a rocket-propelled grenade attack in 2004. The Illinois Army National Guard said Wednesday that Duckworth has earned Federal Aviation Administration certification to pilot fixed-wing aircraft.

Guard officials say Duckworth completed about six months of training before receiving the certification on July 19 in Virginia. Duckworth says the license "fills in the gap in my life that has been there since the day I was shot down."

Duckworth says she plans to buy a small airplane for her commute between Illinois and Washington.

Next up, Duckworth says she hopes to pilot a helicopter again.