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Legends of Aviation: #1. Capt. Manuel Tamayo

Ever since the Wright brothers first took to the sky, the job of a pilot has been one that people the world over have envied and respected in equal measure. However, to have a successful career as a pilot requires an enormous amount of commitment and dedication to the profession. In this, the first of our series "Legends of Aviation", we pay tribute to a man who through his outstanding professionalism has inspired generations of pilots and gained worldwide admiration throughout the industry: Capt. Manuel "Skee" Tamayo.

Following a distinguished career in the Philippines Air Force/ Armed Forces, which he concluded as Chief of Intelligence for the Presidential Security Group, Capt. Tamayo joined Philippine Airlines, where he spent 28 years as pilot, instructor, chief pilot and ultimately as V.P. Flight Ops and Director of Operations. He has been providing instruction to pilots ever since the airforce days and extensively in PAL where he was quickly assigned as training captain and then promoted to Head of Training. He has flown and given instruction on the Fokker 50, Gulfstream 150 and Airbus 320/330/340, as captain, management and check pilot.

Capt. Tamayo with crew of the Papal flight

Capt. Tamayo's first love has always been flying. He said that there is nothing more rewarding than emerging from the cockpit to find passengers thanking him for a safe and pleasant flight. His gracious response would be that all passengers are the airline's VIPs. Among these have been five of the last six Philippines presidents, and in 2015, his greatest honour was to fly Pope Francis to and from Tacloban during the historic Papal visit to Philippines. He has an incredibly impressive resume and has participated in very many international aviation conferences during the last few years.

Capt. Tamayo with his friends; Paul and David from Brookfield

It is a pleasure and privilege to know Capt. Tamayo. In April this year he officially retired from commercial flying. He said he will miss the freedom and the travelling to different cities. But he has taken on yet another new challenge. Now Deputy Director General of the CAA Philippines he begins a new chapter in a remarkable and distinguished career.

Do you know somebody who deserves recognition as a legend of the industry? If so please let us know.

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