Louisiana Traveler: Emery Lyon

Louisiana Traveler: Emery Lyon

WELSH, LA (KPLC) - Welsh businessman Emery Lyon says he learned how to fly when he was only 13.

That's when his older brother went off to college and left his airplane and flight books behind.

And I decided, heck, I know how to fly. I've read these books. I stole his little airplane and I in fact did learn enough in the books to handle the airplane. And I got it back on the ground.

Without his parents knowledge, Emery would fly to air shows as far away as Houston and Shreveport. He got away with it until one day, a federal agent showed up at his home and started talking with his dad.

He said that airplane that's parked over there in that hangar has been flown by an underage kid on the weekends. He showed a picture of me in Houston sitting on the wheel of the airplane watching the air show. A picture!  My dad looked at that and said, "emery!"

At the age of 15, he started crop dusting, earning $400 a weekend in 1952. From there, he started bought his own business and has been crop dusting ever since. He's seen a lot of changes over the years, but the biggest has been GPS tracking of spraying.

That was the biggest change in the industry from the time I started until current day, two things, first devoted airplanes to this industry and the flagging of the airplanes across the field.

Now with new owners arriving next month, Emery Lyon is looking forward to retirement.  But he says he'll still fly every now and then.

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