Michael Matthews, ATP MEII ASES
Michael “Mikey” Matthews, a part owner of Acro Dynamics has lived a life practically immersed in aviation. Matthews knew early on that flight was not just a choice in life but his destiny. His childhood was the product of a military flying family. His father Rick is a retired CW4 Army Helicopter pilot having logged thousands of hours stateside and abroad in aircraft like the UH-1 Huey and AH-1 Cobra. The first family aircraft was a 1952 Cessna 170B which set the tone for his tailwheel addiction. Flying a network of grass strips in the Southeast has given him some pretty concise views of do’s and dont’s while operating in the bush.
After earning a CFII-MEI Certified Flight Instructor ticket in 2004 at NAIA in South Carolina he moved to Las Vegas and began instructing for West Air Aviation flying the High Sierra Desert. Mountain Flying and high/hot altitude operations quickly educated him on performance and weather issues. While in Sin City he instructed many of the United States Air Force’s finest candidates enrolled in the IFS /IFT Initial Flight Training program. After receiving some professional aerobatic instruction he began to teach the art himself and has since logged time in a plethora of aerobatic aircraft such as the Pitts, Eagle, Extra, Giles, MX, Acro Sport/Duster, Swick T, Super Decathlon, Hiperbipe, Rans S 9 & 10, At-6 Texan, The Entire RV Series, Waco and Stearman.
Matthews returned to his home state of North Carolina in 2006 to begin working for a corporate NASCAR flight department. Dale Earnhardt Jr employed Mikey to fly the EMB 120 Brasilia Turboprop in 2006 and his fly career was in motion. Matthews has flown for a multitude of celebrities including the King of Speed, Mr Richard Petty and his son Kyle piloting their personal fleet. He has acquired type ratings in the IA Westwind , Astra/Gulfstream 100 Jet, Embraer E145 and is certified as a factory instructor in the Columbia 400. He continues to fly contract in many turboprop and jet aircraft. He is a Captain at Victory Air LLC in Statesville NC hauling mostly sports teams on the E145 Jet.
Matthews’s activities also led him into the world of agriculture and aerial application. His tail wheel and aerobatic experience helped earned him a seat in NW Iowa flying radial Air Tractors, Turbine Thrush and Dromaders for 8 seasons. He claims it’s the most enjoyable job he’s ever had.
Now ATP Airline Transport Pilot rated he has logged 7000 hours in 120 different types having given 2500 hours dual instruction over a prosperous career in aviation.
Matthews says, “I am humbled daily by the wonderful folks that support our cause. I learn something from each and every one of them. The relationships forged by our aerobatic addictions are often lifelong bonds. Cheers to you all! It is often said that flight time is not deducted from ones lifespan! Long live your passion for flying.”