* Photo: FIORIA by Me Ra Koh
BigBoldBrave was inspired by the life of our oldest son Gabriel Hatton. Here's a little of his story:
It should come as no surprise to anyone that knew him that Gabriel "Skinny" Hatton was born seven weeks prematurely. He would spend the rest of his life eagerly pursuing the next adventure and ready for life's challenges, not waiting for them to come to him! At a very early age, Gabriel fell in love with aviation after flying with his Uncle Dan. It got in his blood and became a driving passion that would propel him to chase his dream of being a pilot. He completed a four year aviation program in high school through the McKinney ISD and joined an aviation club that would become his second family - Tango 31 out of Aero Country airport in McKinney, TX. Through hard work, dedication and the help of his mentor and Tango 31 Founder Kevin Lacey Gabriel's dream came to life! Gabriel was not afraid to make courageous decisions!
At the age of 16, before many kids including himself even had a driver's permit, Gabriel flew solo for the first time. He would continue to rack up flight hours and on July 2nd of 2019 at the age of 17 he passed the written exam and his check ride to officially become a Private Pilot! Gabriel would find every possible excuse to get more hours and be in the cockpit. He LOVED to be in the air! By September 2019, he had logged over 150 hours well on his way to his dream of a career in aviation. As was often the case, one night in September he was doing a friend a favor and flew them to Fayetteville, AR where they were attending college. After getting his friend home safely, Gabriel ran into unexpected weather shortly after starting back home and tragically died in a plane crash. His death left a crater-sized hole in the hearts of his beloved family and friends. However, it's how he lived life that continues to inspire those Gabriel left behind.
Gabriel had a brilliant mind, a fiery and passionate personality, and a deep love for family and friends. He was fiercely loyal and ready to defend his loved ones in an instant, and at the same time ready to challenge or rebuke them if he had an opposing idea or believed they were letting life beat them down. He taught himself to play the guitar, occasionally played on a worship team at church, was an incredible photographer and loved to drive cars (a little too fast at times). Many of his friends tell stories about how "Gabe" (that's what they called him) would, relentlessly at times, encourage them to try new experiences, take risks, and even start a business. His spirit and legacy live on and the Hatton family have established a new mantra to inspire themselves and others to tackle life as he did...to live your life BIG, BOLD, and BRAVE!
* Video: FIORIA by Me Ra KohPhoto: FIORIA by Me Ra Koh
* Video: FIORIA by Me Ra Koh