Ex-MP's Son With Fleet of Planes Worth Millions in US

  • Captain Tom Rege performing pre-flight checks on one of his flight school planes.
    Captain Tom Rege performing pre-flight checks on one of his flight school planes.
  • Captain Tom Rege, son of  former Member of Parliament for Karachuonyo Constituency, Homabay County (2007-2013), Engineer James Rege, is not your typical politician's son.

    The enthusiastic flight instructor has dedicated his life to teaching women and minorities to fly aeroplanes in the County of Leesburg in Virginia State, US.

    It was once stated that 'the apple does not fall far from the tree'. The particular author of the famous line remains unknown. The earliest I’ve seen it in print is from the year 1605, in a book by Hieronymus Megiser.

    “Der Apffel fellt nicht weit vom Baum.” (when translated from German to English, this says: The apple does not fall far from the tree). The statement is used to symbolise the tendency of children to display attributes similar to their parents. However, in Captain Rege's case, the apple landed on an entirely different continent.

    Captain Tom Rege.
    Captain Tom Rege.

    Having moved to the US in the late 1970s as his father pursued higher education in telecommunications engineering, the young Tom quickly fell in love with planes and this has remained true to date.

    By the time his parents were moving back to Kenya, Captain Rege had made it clear that he was going to put himself through flight school in pursuit of his dreams.
    Years down the line, the certified flight instructor is the proud founder of OpenAir Flight Training as well as The Aviation Foundation.

    His foundation fosters the growth of the pilot community for young minorities and women.

    Speaking to Kenya's Alex Chamwada during an interview in February 2018, Captain Rege revealed that each year, he participates in the Board of Aviation Expo  Leesburg edition where he helps raise an average of Ksh25 Million, that is then directed towards providing grants and funding for his students.

    Some of the planes he owns included the agile Cirrus SR20 which he uses during his training sessions. This particular 4-seater plane is prized at around Ksh65 million.

    It was the first production general aviation aircraft equipped with a parachute to lower the airplane safely to the ground after a loss of control, structural failure or mid-air collision

    The SR-series remains the only airplane in its class to include side stick flight controls that combine aspects of a traditional yoke handle.

    An alumnus of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University where he studied Computer, the flight instructor has always maintained that the key to realizing one's version of success is to don the coat known as aggression.

    "Be aggressive, be focused and look out for opportunities out there out there," he once quipped. 

    Captain Tom Rege boarding one of his flight school planes.
    Captain Tom Rege boarding one of his flight school planes.